UK restricts Chinese-made cameras in government buildings – TUSEN – 11/25/2022

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The UK government on Thursday instructed its departments to stop installing Chinese-made security cameras in sensitive buildings over potential security threats.

The directive follows an internal evaluation of the current and future security risks of surveillance systems.

“The review has concluded that, in light of the threat to the UK and the increasing capacity and connectivity of these systems, additional checks are needed,” said Cabinet Minister Oliver Dowden in a written statement to parliament.

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He said ministries should consider replacing these cameras now rather than waiting to upgrade them.

Two companies in the spotlight

In July, the privacy advocacy group Big Brother Watch said most of the surveillance cameras used by the UK government are made by two Chinese companies: Hikvision and Dahua.

At the same time, 67 British lawmakers called for a complete ban on devices made by the two partly state-owned companies. They cited privacy concerns and links to human rights abuses in Xinjiang.

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Dowden said companies subject to China’s National Intelligence Law could be forced to hand over information to Beijing’s security services.

Hikvision said these allegations were “categorically false”.

“Hikvision cannot send end-user data to third parties, we do not manage end-user databases, nor do we sell cloud storage in the UK,” the company said in a statement on Thursday.

zc/jsi (Reuters, TUSEN)

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