DOD-Restricted Chinese-Owned Tech Sold on U.S. Navy Bases + 4 Recommendations

While the House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party is investigating how Chinese nationals have gained access to U.S. military installations, China Tech Threat is releasing our own policy memo on an equally concerning issue: How companies substantially owned by Chinese entities have effectively deployed their products inside the Department of Defense. Over the last decade China has become the United States’ top adversary, increasing their attempted espionage and surveillance against the U.S. government. Despite the known risks presented by Chinese technology companies, state and federal government agencies have continued to have relationships with Chinese owned and operated companies such as Lenovo, Lexmark, Hikvision, and DJI. As a recent example, the U.S. Navy continues to maintain a relationship with… Read More

How BIS Has Accommodated Corporations at The Expense of National Security

By Steve Coonen Recently I was asked, “On a scale of A to F, how would you grade BIS’s performance over the past 5 years?” My response: “If one removes ‘security’ (the S from BIS), then BIS fully merits an A+.” That’s not a compliment. For years BIS has accommodated corporations and industry groups at the expense of American national security. For starters, the Commerce Department’s core mission of advancing U.S. economic interests has prevented an appropriately rigorous approach to export controls. The Department of Commerce’s self-described mission is to “to create the conditions for economic growth and opportunity for all communities.” Consequently, BIS’s goal of denying the export of U.S. technology which can be used for military purposes is… Read More

CTT-CPA “Ca$h Over Country” Report Exposes How Three U.S. Toolmakers Are Boosting Dangerous Chinese Legacy Chipmakers

A new report co-authored by Coalition for a Prosperous America Chief Economist Jeff Ferry and CTT co-founder Roslyn Layton reveals how American semiconductor equipment manufacturing companies are earning billions from Chinese legacy chip manufacturers. That bad choice is undermining American national and economic security: American semiconductor equipment manufacturers (SEMs) have succeeded in lobbying the U.S. government to permit them to sell some of the world’s most complex technology to Chinese government-aligned firms making legacy chips. As can be documented from public data, American SEMs Applied Materials, KLA, and Lam Research have grown their combined revenues from China by 103% between 2018 and 2022. .kb-image_8d3de2-89 .kb-image-has-overlay:after{opacity:0.3;} The Department of Commerce’s mission is to foster economic growth, and also to prevent adversaries… Read More

National Security is Economic Security

Last week, the White House released the much anticipated Executive Order on outbound investment. As Politico notably reported in a preview story, President Biden’s action will require “U.S. firms to notify the federal government if they invest in some lower-end semiconductor production not already covered by export controls.” This is a step in the right direction and comes as the Administration is starting to wake up to the threat of a China-dominated legacy chip market. But more needs to be done. .kb-image9510_bbe45b-0f.kb-image-is-ratio-size, .kb-image9510_bbe45b-0f .kb-image-is-ratio-size{max-width:372px;width:100%;}.kb-image9510_bbe45b-0f figure{max-width:372px;}.kb-image9510_bbe45b-0f .image-is-svg, .kb-image9510_bbe45b-0f .image-is-svg img{width:100%;}.kb-image9510_bbe45b-0f .kb-image-has-overlay:after{opacity:0.3;} Financial Times columnist Rana Foroohar reacted to the Executive Order in a piece aptly titled, “The US now accepts national and economic security can’t be separated.” She says: [W]estern technology… Read More

CHIPS Act Anniversary: Must Play Offense and Defense

Today, in honor of the first anniversary of the CHIPS Act, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said, “The CHIPS for America program is a historic opportunity to solidify America’s leadership and protect national security.” Yes, the CHIPS Act is an important step in developing our own capabilities, but to be successful, we need to play offense and defense. Former Pentagon Chinese tech advisor Steve Coonen makes this point in the video below. Coonen cautions that we shouldn’t assist adversaries like China by supplying them with the semiconductor manufacturing equipment that they need to boost their own capabilities. For China, the ultimate aim is to dominate the global semiconductor market. We’ve seen this playbook before. China will subsidize and dominate – just… Read More

As Nvidia Holds Its Annual Meeting, One Shareholder Raises the National Security Risk of Serving the PRC

By Steve Coonen California-based artificial intelligence chipmaker Nvidia had its annual shareholder meeting on June 22. Owners of the company’s stock should have plenty to be thankful for. The explosion of investor interest in AI technologies since ChatGPT’s emergence in November of last year has caused Nvidia’s share price to climb 200% in 2023, leading it to become one of only seven trillion-dollar companies by market capitalization. But there is a darker side to Nvidia’s growth that even the Biden Administration is now recognizing: its sales to the People’s Republic of China (PRC) which undermine American national security. On June 27 the Wall Street Journal reported that the Department of Commerce is considering new restrictions on exports of AI chips… Read More

Out of the Dark, Into the Light: Exposing Vulnerabilities in the U.S. Defense Supply Chain

Two years ago, the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) put China-based encryption chip maker Hualan Microelectronics on the Entity List for “acquiring and … attempting to acquire US-origin items in support of military modernization for [China’s] People’s Liberation Army.” But as WIRED’s Andy Greenberg writes, Hualan and its subsidiary Initio still supply chips to Western manufacturers of encrypted hard drives that count NASA, NATO, and the U.S. military as customers. The FAA and other government agencies have bought encrypted hard drives with these chips too, per federal procurement records. It’s alarming that the federal government would purchase products from or containing components of Entity Listed companies. It’s also a symptom of a much larger problem of the federal government not… Read More

House China Hawks Demand Commerce Department Protect U.S. Chip Sales

Last month, Beijing announced retaliatory measures to counter the U.S.’s trade restrictions on Chinese chips. In response, leaders on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Select Committee on China are demanding the administration ensure China can’t enforce it’s ban and calling on the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) to place CXMT on the Entity List. In a June 1 joint letter to Secretary Raimondo, Representatives McCaul and Gallagher wrote: “In response to the United States’ legitimate national security action, the CCP lashed out with an arbitrary economic embargo against one American company. Now, the United States must ensure that this economic aggression fails.” Regarding CMXT, they wrote: “ChangXin Memory Technologies’ (CXMT) products are widely understood to serve military and… Read More

CTT Joins National Security Leaders In Calling for Outbound Investment Review To Prevent US Capital From Bolstering CCP

China Tech Threat’s Major General James “Spider” Marks joined the Coalition for a Prosperous America and members of the American foreign policy and national security communities in a letter to President Biden supporting an outbound investment review mechanism to protect U.S. capital from the bolstering the CCP. In the May 17 letter, the signatories wrote: “We write to you today as members of the American foreign policy and national security community to indicate our support for the establishment of an outbound investment review mechanism. While Congress continues to review legislation intended to address this matter, we respectfully request that expeditious action be taken by the administration in the near-term to address the risks and threats associated with U.S. capital bolstering… Read More

What Did Your State Spend on Restricted Chinese Technology? Find Out on May 17.

In 2020, China Tech Threat authored an original report detailing how 40 state governments purchased millions of dollars worth of technology from two Chinese government-owned companies Lenovo and Lexmark, which are restricted by the Pentagon Inspector General. While the federal government has taken steps to curtail spending on dangerous tech products and services, states have no collective security evaluation and continue to inadvertently expose their data through the purchase and deployment of tech products from these companies. In February 2023, we released an update to the original 2020 report with spending data for 28 states which showed they have cumulatively spent more than $230 million on Lexmark and Lenovo technology.  (See We are pleased to announce that on May… Read More