Building state policy momentum to stop the spending is encouraging progress
Did your state contribute to the more than $285 million states have spent on dangerous PRC-owned tech? The answer can be found in China Tech Threat’s (CTT) state research and analysis of spending on restricted Lexmark and Lenovo technology that now includes all 50 states. The analysis is being released today as an update to our February 2023 States of Denial vs States of Momentum report on 28 states which showed they have cumulatively spent more than $230 million on Lexmark and Lenovo technology.
Review the full updated report and corresponding interactive maps at www.StopChinaSpending.com.
CTT has been tracking this disturbing spending trend dating back to 2020 following a U.S. Department of Defense Inspector General report which revealed continued use of technology from Chinese government-owned companies Lenovo and Lexmark. Despite being restricted by U.S. military and intelligence agencies due to their connection to the Chinese government and military, Lenovo and Lexmark technology is still being purchased by state government bodies.
Our original 2020 report detailed how 40 state governments purchased millions of dollars worth of technology from these two restricted companies. While the federal government has taken steps to curtail spending on dangerous tech products and services, states have no collective security evaluation. As a result, states continue to purchase these tech products and inadvertently expose their data by deploying them in agencies that have oversight of sensitive data including law enforcement agencies, several departments with election oversight, and more than a dozen state legislatures.
- 46 states have recently made purchases from one or both PRC-owned companies, with recent spending totaling over $285 million.
- Per-state spending ranges from a few thousand dollars to nearly $50 million.
- Scores of agencies charged with protecting sensitive data are using this dangerous technology, including six military-connected agencies, 10 state police forces, several departments with election oversight, and 13 state legislatures.
- Twelve states appear to have significantly increased spending on Lexmark and Lenovo equipment in the past few years, such as Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Kentucky, Minnesota, Utah, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin.
Building State Momentum to Prohibit These Purchases Means Progress
At the time of CTT’s original 2020 report, Vermont was the single state that had enacted a law to restrict the purchase of suspect technology. That number has since grown to nine, with four new states ratifying laws this spring alone.
- Model policies enacted by Georgia and Florida in 2022 have already made an impact in 2023, with four states ratifying laws this spring – Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana and South Dakota.
- Nine additional states have or continue to consider legislation this year.
- While laws in two states were weakened through the legislative process, our report describes adjustments that can be made in 2024 to make them more effective, among a full set of recommendations for state policymakers.
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