4 State Policy Ideas to Counter China Tech Threats

China Tech Threat (CTT) released a memo to state policymakers offering four specific policy ideas to counter China threats at the state level. CTT has been closely tracking the state-federal tech threat disconnect, and warning that while federal agencies and the U.S. military have rightly taken action to restrict the use of tech makers with ownership ties to the government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) due to the security risks they pose, those policies are not necessarily adopted at the state level. The memo cites a March 2022 AP report on at least six state governments that were hacked by the Chinese government in the last year. CTT’s own report that found 40 states continue to use Chinese… Read More

BIS Leader Previews New Civil Penalties for Export Control Violations

The Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security’s (BIS) Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement, Matthew Axelrod, sounded all the right notes at a speech to the Society for International Affairs on May 16th. Recognizing that adversaries like Russia and China advance their own interests at the expense of the United States, Axelrod previewed strengthened civil penalties from BIS designed to deter American firms from violating export control laws. The proposed new penalties include: BIS publicly disclosing which companies it investigates for export control violations when a case opens, not when it is resolved, often years later Forcing companies to admit wrongdoing if they are found to have violated export control laws Increasing financial penalties for violations These ideas are welcome… Read More

GA State Rep. Momtahan Explains State Solutions To Counter China Tech Threats  

China Tech Threat Co-Founder Dr. Roslyn Layton talked with Georgia State Representative Martin Momtahan just days after Governor Brian Kemp signed into law his bill, SB 346, that will prohibit the State of Georgia or any state agencies from contracting with any company owned or operated by the Chinese government.    During the conversation, Rep. Momtahan explains the impetus for his legislation to protect individuals, businesses and government infrastructure in Georgia from technology threats posed by China intrusion and influence. He shares how his experience working in technology security as far back as 2010 helped him recognize the need for stronger state-level restrictions to match similar technology security policies at the federal level, including the Department of Defense.   Rep. Momtahan also explains… Read More

Chinese Government Subsidies in the Semiconductor Industry: Bad for American Companies and Competitiveness

Last month, Stephen Ezell, Vice President for Global Innovation Policy at the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, testified before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission. Much of his testimony addressed how Chinese government subsidies in its homegrown semiconductor industry has damaged American companies and the marketplace in general.  The problem, according to Ezell, is that “Chinese subsidies (and other mercantilist practices) are propping up inferior, less innovative Chinese semiconductor enterprises at the expense of U.S. and other foreign competitors.” He continues: “In the semiconductor sector, perhaps China’s most pernicious mercantilist practice has been aggressively industrial subsidization, largely channeled through the country’s $170 billion National Integrated Circuit (IC) Fund.” Writes Ezell, “Such subsidies are an important part of the explanation… Read More

Is BIS Edging Closer to Putting YMTC on the Entity List?

Is BIS Edging Closer to Putting YMTC on the Entity List? The Information reports that the U.S. Department of Commerce is weighing restrictions on the sale of semiconductor manufacturing equipment (SME) to YMTC, China’s national champion semiconductor manufacturer known to have close ties with the Chinese military. These restrictions, which would also reportedly apply to other state-backed firms such as Hua Hong Semiconductor and ChangXin Memory Technologies, would deal a blow to YMTC’s ability to produce chips, and secure a victory for American national security. The rules, which reportedly take months to develop, would echo the decision the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) made in 2020 to place China’s Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation on the Entity List… Read More

Lenovo to Benefit from the PRC’s Indigenous Tech Ultimatum. Will Democratic Countries Respond?  

Early this morning, Bloomberg reported, “China has ordered central government agencies and state-backed corporations to replace foreign-branded personal computers with domestic alternatives.” The directive, claims Bloomberg, is consistent with China’s “sweeping effort to reduce its dependence on geopolitical rivals such as the U.S. for everything from semiconductors to servers and phones.” Lenovo Consolidates Chinese Market and Continues to Sell to States – Despite Military Bans   Lenovo, the global PC manufacturer partly owned/controlled by the Chinese government, will profit most from the ban as the central government replaces 50+ million PCs, with many more sales to come from provincial governments. Ironically, the Bloomberg report speculated that Beijing is concerned about security, yet the State Department, Department of Homeland Security, and… Read More

U.S. Sanctions Set to Bite Hikvision – But Bigger China Tech Threats Like YTMC Still Loom

The Financial Times reports that the U.S. government is preparing to sanction Hikvision, the Chinese surveillance technology giant. If enacted, these sanctions would cause an untold number of companies and foreign governments to run the risk of being sanctioned themselves, should they continue to use Hikvision equipment. There will be no choice but for companies and governments to rip and replace Hikvision technologies. This news of potential U.S. government action is certainly welcome. Not only could it help to stifle the Chinese government’s campaign of surreptitiously gathering mass quantities of data on the world’s citizens, but given that Hikvision has been known to put storage particles from YMTC in its gear, it could also  impact the chipmaker with deep ties… Read More

BIS Can Take Action to Stop China from Surpassing the U.S. in Artificial Intelligence

China Tech Threat’s Future of BIS project recently released a new paper about the need to “Build an AI Workforce at BIS to Strengthen Controls and Stop Illicit Acquisition of American Artificial Intelligence Technologies.” To recap, AI is a critical technology for achieving economic and military advantages. China already spends billions every year to integrate AI components into its weaponry, and Chinese companies like Dahua, Megvii, and Hikvision have built surveillance camera empires around the world. China-based Lenovo also has funded and employs dangerous facial recognition technologies like Face++. The Chinese government will use its AI prowess to entrench authoritarian regimes, capture facial recognition and other data from the world’s citizens, and compromise American liberties and national security. Chinese investment into American companies… Read More

Genocide of Uyghur Muslims Shows Why China Must Not Lead the World in AI

China Tech Threat’s Future of BIS project came out with a new paper earlier this week: “Build an AI Workforce at BIS to Strengthen Controls and Stop Illicit Acquisition of American Artificial Intelligence Technologies.” AI is an important technology. Countries which can execute AI effectively will seize leadership in military and commercial domains. Sadly, China has already demonstrated the power to develop and use AI in nefarious ways that should cause the U.S. national security community to act now to ensure China does not gain an insurmountable lead. Take western China, where the U.S. State Department has determined that the Chinese government is carrying out a genocide against Uyghur Muslims and other ethnic minorities. Part of the reason China has… Read More

The Future Ruler of the World?

China Tech Threat’s Future of BIS project is out today with a new paper: “Build an AI Workforce at BIS to Strengthen Controls and Stop Illicit Acquisition of American Artificial Intelligence Technologies”. AI – which essentially causes machines to perform human-like functions – is one technology that is poised to live up to the hype. Five years ago Russian President Vladimir Putin said “Whoever becomes the leader in this sphere will become the ruler of the world.” What would make him make such a sweeping statement about something we normally associate with iPhone autocorrect and Netflix recommendations? In a military context, AI has enormous application for intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, logistics, command and control capabilities, lethal autonomous weapons systems, and many… Read More