According to a report, employees of a controversial Apple data center run by Chinese authorities have been forced to leave work and cut off from their families for a week as parts of the city where it faces a “severe” coronavirus lockdown .
Apple’s data center, which is run by a Chinese government-backed partner called Guizhou Cloud Big Data, in the city of Guiyang is on strict lockdown amid a coronavirus outbreak, Bloomberg told on Thursday.
According to a social media notice from Guizhou Cloud Big Data, many employees at the facility haven’t seen their families in a week because the faculty works on a “closed loop” system designed to avoid infection, reported by the outlet. it was done.
“Faced with a dire situation, we need courageous people on the front lines,” the company said in a WeChat post.
According to Bloomberg, six of Guiyang’s 10 districts are currently on lockdown, meaning many of the city’s 6 million residents have been barred from leaving their homes for any reason other than a coronavirus test.
Some residents have reportedly complained about the shortage of food as government deliveries have come to a standstill.
According to Bloomberg, Apple first opened the Guiyang data center in 2017 and the facility handles iCloud storage of email, photos and videos for millions of Chinese customers.
Under Chinese law, Apple was required to give control of massive datacenters to a government firm – a move that critics say enables government surveillance and suppression.
Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
This isn’t the first time China’s “zero COVID” policy has halted Apple’s operations in the country.
In May, workers at a Shanghai factory that makes Apple products rebel against lockdown restrictions, dramatic video showed workers in hazmat suits clashing with guards and crossing security barriers.
As the coronavirus rattled Apple’s manufacturing system, many Wall Street analysts expected the company to hike prices during the company’s iPhone 14 display on Wednesday.
But Apple did not raise US iPhone prices, in what one analyst called a “shocking” move. The company raised prices in some other markets including Europe and Japan.