Growing economic tensions between the United States and China have begun to affect Apple, the Wall Street Journal reports today, as Chinese government agencies and state-controlled media have initiated a new campaign to block “prohibited content” from Apple devices. If Apple refuses to cooperate, authorities could shut down services that are violating Chinese laws, the report says.

Five state-supported media outlets raised the first issue, together claiming that Apple is not adequately filtering banned content — texts and images featuring pornography, gambling, and counterfeit goods — from its iMessage service. Shortly after the media reports surfaced, several Chinese government agencies announced that they will impose new requirements requiring Apple and other phone makers to “include spam-filtering features,” though it’s unclear whether the authorities are solely concerned about pornographic, gambling, and counterfeiting spam.

State-owned broadcaster CCTV raised a second issue today, claiming that Apple’s App Store distributes illegal gambling apps that have been disguised as official lottery apps. In the past, Apple has willingly removed otherwise legal apps from its App Store to comply with China-specific laws, so if there are actually illegal gambling apps in the Store, addressing that issue should be straightforward.

China’s “media first, police next” approach is no surprise to observers, as the country has historically used state-supported press to publicize accusations against countries and companies ahead of government actions against them. As the Journal points out, a dispute last year with South Korea led the Chinese media to call for retaliation against South Korean companies, damaging sales of Korean products. Since China and the United States are in the midst of a trade war, Apple’s U.S.-designed, Chinese-manufactured products have been mentioned as a likely target, though they’ve generally been spared up until now.

Apple faces profound risks if Chinese authorities clamp down on its business. Roughly one-fifth of the company’s revenue currently comes from China, notably including an ever-growing percentage of App Store revenues and generally (if not consistently) improving device sales. Moreover, the company depends heavily on Chinese manufacturing facilities to fabricate its products, and would be unable to replenish inventories worldwide if its Chinese supply, manufacturing, and shipping activities were disrupted.

Addressing China’s stated concerns could either prove to be easy or incredibly difficult for Apple, depending on whether the issue is actually “spam” or otherwise “prohibited content.” Apple’s messaging service iMessage doesn’t have spam filters like Google’s Android, which allows third-party plugins to view and filter unwanted messages. While Apple lets users filter out unknown senders, manually block senders, and report spammers, its anti-spam tools have been criticized as fairly basic.

Facing incredible levels of call and text spam, India’s government has threatened to ban iPhones from the country’s networks — and Apple appears to be at least partially responding. It has said that iOS 12 will include some additional spam reporting features when it launches in September, and it’s possible that Chinese authorities will be satisfied with them.

But if the Chinese government expects Apple to filter or censor users’ private texts and images for morally or legally questionable content, resolution may be virtually impossible. The company has unambiguously declined to patrol or permit access to its users’ private messages, and utilizes end-to-end encryption to guarantee what it describes as a personal right to privacy. While a Chinese government-controlled company holds encryption keys for iCloud users in China, Apple has maintained that it is committed to maintaining user privacy.