The debate over the security threat posed by Chinese technology has returned to the public eye immediately after the UK chose to ban Chinese telecom Huawei from accessing its 5G telecoms networks. In the offices of important government leaders, the British government recently replaced security equipment supplied by Chinese technology companies.

It comes after the British government was urged to take action against the use of surveillance technology made by two Chinese businesses, Hikvision and Dahua, which were previously blacklisted by Washington, according to a story in the US daily Financial Post.

Small components made by Chinese companies found in IoT gadgets, however, pose a threat that has gone unnoticed.

The Internet of Things (IoT) has progressed from specialized industrial use to widespread use in homes, workplaces and some vehicles. These technologies are fantastic at helping us in our daily lives, but they serve as data collectors that a hostile state like China can use to intimidate, pressure, or influence a rival organization or person.

Small cellular IoT modules are what make all these connected features possible. They are rarely sold as finished goods, unlike semiconductors or 5G base stations, which helps explain why London and Washington seem to have ignored the issue. The US cybersecurity agency CISA has just issued a warning about serious vulnerabilities in GPS-enabled IoT devices developed in China that are found in cars and motorcycles. In addition to allowing Chinese suppliers to remotely track the location of these devices and perhaps cut off the supply of gasoline while the vehicles are in motion, they contain hard-coded administrator passwords and other vulnerabilities. The UK’s decision to replace China’s surveillance system was praised by Prof Fraser Sampson, Biometrics Storage and Use Commissioner and Surveillance Cameras Commissioner.

He assured Asian Lite that other government agencies will evaluate their current methods and take his suggestions into consideration when purchasing surveillance and security equipment. Sampson is the national chairman of the Association of Police and Crime Chiefs and a specialist in criminal justice. According to him, there is an abundance of private, unregulated recording devices on the market, including cameras, cell phones, video doorbells and others.

“These numerous CCTV cameras in our public spaces are unnecessary. Simply put, we need a mechanism to collect content and modify it for security purposes,” he explained. Due to the companies’ involvement in the Chinese government’s mistreatment of Uyghurs in Xinjiang, China, other rights groups are calling for Hikvision and Dahua to be banned in the UK. Hikvision and Dahua cameras are used in all concentration camps in the Uighur region. Both businesses have agreements to carry out 11 different, extensive monitoring programs in the region totaling at least $1.2 billion.

Numerous in-depth investigations by think tanks and international media have revealed that since 2017, Chinese authorities have imprisoned up to 1.8 million Uyghurs and other Turkic minorities in internment camps.

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