Chinese civil servants and employees of state-linked enterprises are facing tighter constraints on private travel abroad and scrutiny of their foreign connections, according to official notices and more than a dozen people familiar with the matter, as Beijing wages a campaign against foreign influence.

Ten current and former employees said the curbs had been widened since 2021 to include bans on overseas travel, tighter limits on trips' frequency and duration, onerous approval processes and pre-departure confidentiality training. They said the measures were unrelated to COVID-19.

The individuals' accounts varied but were consistent in describing heightened scrutiny of overseas travel even after China reopened borders in January. The people, who worked across the country as civil servants, in state-owned enterprises or the public sector more broadly, spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the issue's sensitivity.