In recent days, China has unleashed a barrage of manipulated news meant to undermine the demonstrators and stir up nationalist sentiment.
Paul MozurFirst there was all out censorship. Then warnings. Finally in recent weeks China has waged a full-blown disinformation campaign against the HK protesters. It’s a reminder the world’s most powerful online manipulation has its capital in Beijing, not Moscow.
Police say the samples are needed to 'prevent incidents,' while a legal expert says a biodata collection scheme in Xinjiang could be rolled out nationwide.
Paul MozurChina police offered this explanation for taking random saliva swabs at a bus station: "Everyone will have to do this, because we have had orders to do it....We have to collect samples from these people to prevent incidents such as robbery from occurring."
A technology-driven quest to identify protesters and police officers has people in both groups desperate to protect their anonymity. Some fear a turn toward China-style surveillance.
Paul MozurPlainclothes police stalked Colin Cheung as he went to lunch. When he unlocked his phone they sprang on him to pry it away. Later they’d pin down his head to trigger the phone’s facial-recognition unlock. His crime? Allegedly creating a Telegram channel.
Amid worsening trade tensions, an American businessman was barred for days from leaving, in an apparent message to President Trump. Others worry they may be next.
Paul MozurDetention diplomacy: As China-US tensions soared in June, a Koch Industries executive was held, questioned for several days in southern China. In Beijing a former US diplomat was cornered by plainclothes police. Fears of run-ins are becoming a new reality.
The move to place five additional Chinese actors on the “entity list” heightens tensions just as American and Chinese officials try to get trade talks back on track
Paul MozurOur take. Sugon is tiny compared to the likes of Huawei, but it’s still a huge deal. Its supercomputers support China’s electricity grid, its weather forecasting, and its largest telecom services provider. And it does so all with tons of US microchips.
An attack against the messaging app Telegram and the arrest of a user show how the Hong Kong clash is unfolding digitally, with growing sophistication on both sides.
Paul MozurThe day before protests flared in Hong Kong, 10 police officers showed up at Ivan Ip’s house. They forced him to open his phone, and took data on a 20,000 person chat group organizing protests. How China polices the internet is becoming how Hong Kong does.
Chinese officials told the companies there would be dire consequences if they cut sales or pulled production from China, people familiar with the meetings said.
Paul MozurThe brinksmanship continues. This week China’s officials summoned tech multinationals, American and otherwise, to warn there would be dire consequences if firms cut sales or pulled production. They strongly hinted the American companies should lobby DC.
Without disclosing details, officials say they plan to retaliate against those who blockade Chinese companies, in an apparent response to Huawei’s problems.
Paul MozurAnd here’s our piece. If this brinksmanship continues it really will tear apart the electronics supply chain that has knit together the world’s two largest economies for the better part of three decades.
China has turned the Xinjiang region in its far west into an incubator for automated authoritarianism that could spread across the country and beyond.
Paul MozurThree years ago China’s leading maker of military electronics, CETC, came to Xinjiang with a vision: bring the tech of battlefield management to control and surveil all aspects of the lives of Uighurs. This is our attempt to walk through how it works.
In Ecuador, cameras across the country send footage to monitoring centers to be examined by police and domestic intelligence. The surveillance system’s origin: China.
Paul MozurExporting the technology of authoritarianism: China has been selling its surveillance to the world. In Ecuador, where a camera and phone-tracking system was supposed to be used by police, we found a feared domestic intelligence agency also had access
A reporter traveled to Xinjiang territory, where thousands of ethnic Uighurs have been detained in camps. The authorities followed his every move.
Paul MozurFollowed into bathrooms and confronted by fake car accidents: What it’s like to report in Xinjiang, with a lede far more sci-fi than I ever thought I’d write: “It took four days in Kashgar, China, for the secret police to get access to my dreams.”
In a major ethical leap for the tech world, Chinese start-ups have built algorithms that the government uses to track members of a largely Muslim minority group.
Paul MozurAutomating Racism: Police in China are using A.I. to mark/track ethnic minority Uighurs across the country. It’s the first known example of facial recognition being used intentionally by a government to racially profile and a massive ethical leap for A.I.
Hundreds of thousands of Uighurs and other Muslims from Xinjiang have been detained in camps, drawing international condemnation. But outside the camps, Uighurs live in a virtual cage.
Paul MozurSnapshot of a culture under siege. Our attempt to show what it feels like in Xinjiang right now. Blanketed with surveillance technology and checkpoints, the ancient Silk Road city has the feel of an open-air prison.
The suit is likely to argue that banning government agencies from using the company’s equipment amounts to an unconstitutional legislative punishment.
Paul MozurYou get a lawsuit! You get a lawsuit! After hitting Canada with a suit, Huawei also plans to sue the US government for banning federal agencies/military from using its products. Looks like Huawei is backing up its aggressive PR blitz with a legal one.
To protect himself and his sources from prying eyes in China, Paul Mozur, a technology reporter in Shanghai, leaves just an “innocent trace” of digital exhaust.
Paul MozurThe uncertainty is what gets me. It’s hard to know if you’re jumping at shadows or saving yourself and your sources. You can’t avoid the unblinking eye of China’s surveillance state, but you can at least manage the risk. Hopefully some of this is helpful.
English translation for popular song by Abdurehim Heyit. Lyrics by Abdurehim Otkur. Translation by me. (click CC) Abdurehim Heyit has been detained for Chine...
Paul MozurWord is coming out Abdhurehim Heyit, one of the great living Uighur musicians, died while imprisoned in a Chinese re-education camp. He was locked up in 2017. It’s worth taking a few minutes to watch him play as a final tribute. To the King of the Dutar
In the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, Facebook, working with a local partner, has found a way to overcome China’s internet blocks to make ad dollars.
Paul MozurFacebook is blocked in China, but it has an odd sales floor atop a concrete tower in Shenzhen. The office is a testament to the very profitable workarounds it has used to make big ad bucks in China. By one estimate it made $5 bln in China ads in 2018.