The Atlantic Profiles IPVM - "The Tech Site That Took On Chinas Surveillance State"

This is a very significant milestone for IPVM. While we and those who follow us closely know the significance of the work we do, many in the broader world do not and some in the industry pretend not to know.

The Tech Site That Took On China’s Surveillance State

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Some excerpts:

In recent years, though, IPVM has delivered a string of highly impressive scoops, many in collaboration with major news organizations such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the Los Angeles Times, that have revealed alarming and sinister aspects of what Chinese surveillance companies have been up to. A December 2020 report by The Washington Post based on a document unearthed by IPVM detailed efforts by the Chinese tech giant Huawei to develop a face-scanning system that could trigger a “Uyghur alarm”—referring to the mainly Muslim ethnic group of northwestern China that has faced heavy state repression. The article prompted a European executive to resign from Huawei shortly after, and in February 2021 to speak out about the company’s technology.

The same month, the Los Angeles Times published a report based on a user guide found by IPVM in which the Chinese firm Dahua claimed that its camera technology could identify Uyghurs and automatically alert authorities when it did so. The revelation prompted a group of U.S. senators to write to Amazon demanding to know why the company had signed a multimillion-dollar deal with Dahua. Both the bipartisan Congressional-Executive Commission on China and the U.S. State Department have noted IPVM’s work in their reports on China....

This record of breaking important stories has made IPVM a closely read publication among not just people interested in surveillance technology but those who want to understand Beijing’s geopolitical ambitions, as well as the deeply strained relations between the United States and China....

According to Honovich, the site made no conscious decision to concentrate on China. If there was a “bad actor” that IPVM set out to cover, “it was Silicon Valley, not the PRC,” he said. But as Chinese firms made inroads into the U.S. market...

I am excited about doing even more in the future.

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