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Estonia. Intelligence Report: China Spying on TikTok Thanks to Cars and Vacuum Cleaners

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Estonia’s foreign intelligence report shows that China is using technology to gather intelligence. Experts drew attention to the danger resulting from technologies used in devices such as autonomous cars or intelligent vacuum cleaners. The report also talks about the risks associated with using TikTok. “The information may be useful for intelligence collection, extortion, and cyber attacks,” it was emphasized.

In a foreign intelligence report released Tuesday Estonia it was noted that the development and spread of Chinese technology around the world is a very clear strategy China in order to increase political influence. The goal is to reach a point where technologically integrated solutions cannot be replaced by Western technology, both due to incompatibility and interconnection.

“Exactly the same risk of scanning the entire environment is associated with popular home electronics, such as automatic vacuum cleaners. Additionally, there is a risk that personalized services of Chinese technology companies collect information about their users,” the report said.

Both the public and private sectors should actively prevent the excessive spread of Chinese technology, because there is a very high probability that sooner rather than later, due to geopolitical developments and security issues, a painful decision to abandon it will have to be made, Estonian intelligence warned.

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Experts drew attention to the danger resulting from the adoption of lidar systems that scan the environment by devices that need this data for their work, such as cars or vacuum cleaners. “This means that autonomous cars equipped with Chinese technology can be used for intelligence purposes,” it said.

TikTok collects information that could be useful for intelligence

The interviewer emphasized that there are risks associated with using TikTok and downloading data via the app through Beijing. It was explained that China could thus work on the development of “perfect artificial intelligence” based on “visual and behavioral data of people of various origins.”

“In addition to AI developments, other data collected by the app may also be useful. TikTok collects extensive information about the device and its user, such as contacts, calendar, other applications, Wi-Fi connections and location. The information may be useful for intelligence gathering, extortion, as well as cyber attacks,” it was noted.

TikTok application (illustrative photo)Konstantin Savusia/shutterstock.com

The Kremlin’s “ambitious plan”.

The Estonian foreign intelligence report also shows that Russia plans to militarily dominate the Baltic Sea region, part of which will be a gradual increase in the number of troops on the border with Estonia. It was noted that the Kremlin also plans to continue the war against it Ukraine and confrontation with the West.

Read more: Estonian foreign intelligence about the Kremlin’s “ambitious plan”.

Main photo source: Konstantin Savusia/shutterstock.com



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