Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu said, "The US has criticised China's policies to administer the Internet and insinuated that China restricts Internet freedom."
"This runs contrary to the facts and is harmful to China-US relations," Ma said in a statement on the ministry's Web site.
"We urge the United States to respect the facts and cease using so-called Internet freedom to make groundless accusations against China," Ma said without mentioning Hillary by name.
The spokesman also indicated that China did not want to see the dispute overwhelm cooperation with the Obama administration.
On Thursday, Jan 21, Hillary Clinton had criticised the cyber policies of China and Iran, among others.
Hillary had also demanded Beijing to investigate complaints by Google Inc about hacking and censorship.