Chinese authorities say police have arrested 15,000 people on suspicion of cybercrimes as the government tightens its control over the Internet.

The Ministry of Public Security said Tuesday that police have investigated more than 7,400 cases of possible cybercrimes, including hacking, online fraud and illegal sale of personal information, resulting in 15,000 arrests. It did not say when the arrests were made.

Authorities launched a six-month special operation to clean the Internet in July, but some of the cases date back as far as December.

Beijing considers the Internet to be a virtual territory that must be ruled by laws and regulations.

Recently, authorities detained a man for exaggerating the death toll from recent blasts in the port city of Tianjin. At least 114 people were killed in the explosions.