China Subverting US Efforts to Promote Secure Equipment

Surveillance technology trade publication IPVM is attracting new attention for its work to expose how video surveillance companies Hikvision and Dahua, which are deliberately sowing confusion in the marketplace and flouting our national security laws. They do this by making false claims to the FCC about their Entity List status and marketing those claims as fact in business and promotional materials with the support of their US distributor.  IPVM has a record of published investigations on how Hikivision and Dahua technology is being used to support the surveillance and internment of Uyghurs in Xinjiang, thus deeming them a national security risk by the FCC and subject to the revocation of FCC equipment authorizations. In a new letter to the FCC,… Read More

Biden Administration’s Year End Push To Crack Down On China Tech Threats

As 2021 draws to a close, the Biden Administration appears to be making a push to crack down on U.S. trade with Chinese tech companies that only support the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and its enhancement of military capabilities that directly threaten our national and economic security. China Tech Threat is encouraged by these developments and hopes they are just the start to a more aggressive 2022. On December 17, National Security Council (NSC) Officials met with deputies from various U.S. agencies to review a proposal to toughen restrictions on China’s largest chipmaker, Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC). The meeting is an encouraging development an CTT noted in a blog that SMIC isn’t the only Chinese chipmaker that should be… Read More

Is the Biden Administration Finally Going to Crack Down on China’s Chipmakers?

Bloomberg reports that the National Security Council (NSC) was set to meet yesterday to discuss tougher restrictions on China’s largest chipmaker, Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC). In September 2020, China Tech Threat described how China’s semiconductor sector is integrated with its military and noted the important report on SMIC by military intelligence expert James Mulvenon. However, SMIC’s designation as a military end user and ultimately to the Entity List seemed to lack teeth. Indeed as House Foreign Affairs Ranking Member Mike McCaul (R-TX) told China Tech Threat in a recent exclusive, the licensing policy for SMIC is “utterly ineffective” and “appears designed to give the company access to nearly all the semiconductor manufacturing equipment, technologies, and other goods it needs… Read More

Exclusive: NY Reps. Call on Governor Hochul to Bolster State Cyber Protections

Members of New York’s Congressional Delegation today issued a letter to New York Governor Kathy Hochul requesting details about the state’s “lax practices relating to IT cybersecurity and espionage protections” and purchases of restricted information technology equipment. It is being sent as the state looks to allocate new federal funding for IT systems after already spending tens of millions of dollars on technology products from Chinese state-owned and directed companies Lenovo and Lexmark, which have been restricted by federal agencies.China Tech Threat was provided an exclusive preview of the letter signed by Representatives Chris Jacobs, Nicole Malliotakis, Elise Stefanik, Claudia Tenney and Lee Zeldin, which states: “Recently, it has come to light that New York State has spent tens of… Read More

Lenovo: “An American security threat”

In a piece published over the weekend, an analysis reports that Lenovo continues “not shy away from its deep Chinese military ties” an remains a serious security threat to Americans across the country. Throughout the piece, the authors emphasize the continued grip that the Chinese Communist Party has on companies across the People’s Republic of China, including Lenovo. “In June 2017, Lenovo Group Ltd. joined the Civil Enterprise Military Expo in Beijing as a leading civil enterprise representative, along with large state-owned enterprises such as China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation and China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation.” The authors also explain that even with this clear and alarming evidence, the U.S. continues to fail to take real concrete steps around businesses… Read More

National Security Experts Urge FAA to Resolve 5G Rollout Concerns

Following the 30-day pause of the rollout of 5G in the C-band, a group of national security experts including former Congressman Mike Rogers (R-MI) and several retired generals wrote to the White House, expressing deep concern about the national security implications of the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) flawed assertions that aviation safety could be at risk from 5G transmissions. They noted that the stakes are high in the race with China, a country that has deployed millions of 5G base stations and has dedicated twice as much valuable mid-spectrum to 5G versus the U.S. Notably U.S. weapons systems, cyber security, and intelligence capabilities will rely heavily on 5G technology, so there is a strategic imperative for the U.S. to win… Read More

BIS Adds 12 Chinese Companies to the Entity List

Last week, the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), within the Dept. of Commerce, added a dozen Chinese companies on the Entity List over national security and foreign policy concerns. The action comes as we await confirmation of Alan Estevez to assume leadership of the relatively unknown, but increasingly crucial agency. One of these companies is semiconductor maker New H3C Technologies (H3C), which is partly owned by U.S. company Hewlett Packard Enterprise. For its 2020 fiscal year, HPE recorded about $737 million in sales to H3C. This is equal to about 3% of total HPE revenues – as well as purchases amounting to roughly $215 million. Additionally, HPE’s Chinese partner is H3C, Tsinghua Unigroup, which CTT has repeatedly flagged as… Read More

China’s AI startups face few barriers to buy American tech; BIS, DoD, and Treasury on the sidelines

An explosive new report, Harnessed Lightning: How the Chinese Military Is Adopting Artificial Intelligence, from the Center for Security & Emerging Technology (CSET) is a wake-up call to America’s national security and strategic trade control policymakers. The report demonstrates how thousands of Chinese artificial intelligence (AI) startups can access American technologies, including advanced DRAM semiconductors. Of the 273 AI suppliers to the Chinese military identified in this study, less than two dozen are named in U.S. export control and sanctions regimes, whether the Entity List published by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), the Chinese Military-Industrial Complex Companies List published by the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, or the List of… Read More

Air Force’s GPS Do-Over Serves as Reminder of the Cost of Insecure Technology

In August 2019, a Pentagon report fretted over $30+ million spent by military personnel on Lexmark printers and Lenovo computers that had been banned from US military and intelligence networks. Since that time, China Tech Threat has explored how both companies have continued to sell $50 million worth of equipment to nearly forty states. We continue to ask questions to state leaders, including those from Maine, New Jersey and Tennessee that have ignored our Freedom of Information Act requests asking them to tell us how much they spent and where this equipment is used. Learn more about our efforts here. What we do know is that the US military continues to reject suspect Chinese technology. One prominent recent example comes… Read More

The Secure Equipment Act of 2021: From House to Senate to the President’s Desk

Last week, the Senate moved quickly to pass by unanimous consent The Secure Equipment Act of 2021, just eight days after the House of Representatives passed it 420-4. The legislation now moves to President Joe Biden’s desk for him to sign into law. The bipartisan and bicameral legislation empowers the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to restrict equipment authorization to companies – such as the People’s Republic of China (PRC) state-backed firms Huawei and ZTE – on the agency’s “Covered Equipment or Services List.” In today’s increasingly connected world, we must animate our technology with our values,” said Senator Ed Markey (D-MA), one of the bill’s co-sponsors. “That’s why our bipartisan legislation will keep compromised equipment out of U.S. telecommunications networks… Read More