Amidst the United States’ ongoing restrictions on Huawei, the country is now considering cutting off the flow of important American technology to five other Chinese companies. The restrictions may stretch to include video surveillance sector.
The US is now considering adding Zhejiang Dahua Technology Co, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co and some other unidentified companies to the United States’ blacklist. This move will bar the companies from accessing US software and components. The American government is expressing concerns about the company’s role in helping repress West China’s minority community, Uighurs.
This also comes amidst concerns that these Chinese company’s cameras come with facial recognition abilities that can be employed in spying.
Last week, Trump barred Huawei Technologies Co. from purchasing American technology. Even though they lifted this embargo for another 90 days to allow for a proper transition. Google followed suit to relax its restriction following the United State Commerce Department’s declaration.
China vs the United States?
These Chinese companies are the largest traders of surveillance hardware in the world. It is now unclear how many other companies may join Huawei on the Entity list that prohibits the sale of American made technology without a special license.
The United States Justice Department accused Huawei violating Iran sanctions and spying on the world for China. They believe Beijing has ambitions of becoming a technology superpower using Intel from these Chinese companies. In the midst of the drama, Huawei’s founder’s eldest daughter was arrested in Canada over allegations that Huawei denied.
Some American senators had, in a letter written in April, urged the American government to impose sanctions on Chinese companies and officials who violate human right laws. A United Nations assessment confirmed the detaining of a large number of Uighurs, running into thousands.
Dahua and Hikvision have about 176 million video surveillance cameras monitoring public spaces in China. It also has about 50 million in America. Furthermore, they sell cameras all around the world and use Artificial Intelligence to conduct facial recognition in large scales.