Is China's Collection Genetic Data a Security Threat to US?
The United States faces major privacy and national security threats due to China's healthcare and genetic data access. China has already gathered Personal Identifying Information on a large portion of the United States' population due to cyber breaches carried out in previous years.
Which authoritarian state, with a track record of using DNA for repression and surveillance, would you want to have access to your genetic information or other health-related data? If your answer is none, pay attention.
Through legal and unlawful ways, the People's Republic of China has amassed vast amounts of healthcare data from the United States and other countries across the world, which it has used for reasons that it alone has authority over.
Authorities are collecting healthcare data from the United States in the People's Republic of China, raising significant worries about the privacy of Americans and the country's economic and national security as a whole.
According to American intelligence officials on Friday, China's private enterprises are gathering genetic data from people all over the globe as part of a larger drive by the Chinese government and private corporations to build the world's biggest bio-database. Authorities are collecting healthcare data from the United States in the People's Republic of China, raising major worries about the privacy of Americans and the country's economic and national security as a whole.
According to a recent study published by the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, the United States must improve the security of essential technologies such as artificial intelligence, quantum computing, semiconductors, and other technologies relevant to the so-called bioeconomy.
The bioeconomy in China was bolstered by $14.4 billion in investments from private investors in 2019. This is in contrast to the United States' far smaller commitment of $10.4 billion in the region.
Michael Orlando, acting head of the counterintelligence center, a branch of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, claimed that China and other nations are attempting to dominate these technologies and are using both legal and unlawful tactics to gain American know-how.
China and other nations have been attempting to steal American technology and intellectual property for a long time. The private sector in the United States has been particularly targeted.
Other nations, such as Russia, continue to pose a concern. Still, experts believe China is the most severe threat because of its economic prowess.
China thinks that controlling these fields would give it a competitive advantage globally, and American corporations are also spending extensively in these areas.
Artificial intelligence and machine learning have the potential to transform many parts of life, including military operations, provided they are properly implemented.
Quantum computing will enable governments to crack the most challenging encryption now in use, and semiconductors are essential for computers and a wide range of consumer devices.
According to the latest reports, authorities are increasingly emphasizing the junction of technology and genetic and biological research as a source of rivalry and espionage.
According to You, Edward You, who serves as the national counterintelligence officer for new and disruptive technologies, has said that the Chinese government is gathering medical, health, and genetic data from all around the globe.
He believes that the nation that creates the finest knowledge database will have an advantage in researching remedies for future pandemics and that China currently has an advantage in this regard, according to him.
According to the counterintelligence center, Beijing has a history of mishandling genetic data, which cited a 2019 New York Times investigation on how China utilizes genetic testing to monitor members of the Uyghurs, a Muslim minority group with a majority of its members living in China.
Mr. You cited a Reuters story in which he said that a Chinese business, BGI, had collaborated with the Chinese military to create a newborn genetic test that had allowed it to gather information from millions of individuals all over the globe.
The company developed a footing in the United States in 2013, when it acquired a genomics company based in the country.
The counterintelligence center also highlighted investments made by WuXi, which purchased a Pfizer manufacturing factory in China, announced the establishment of a production facility in Massachusetts, and made an investment in 23andMe, a consumer genomics firm, in 2015 and 2016.
Even though China is looking for a wide range of business data, the high-tech sectors, which Beijing has said it intends to dominate in the following decades, are the most vulnerable.
Officials in the United States and Europe have long claimed that China steals intellectual property, manufactures lower-cost copies of western items, drives rivals out of business, and controls the market.
That is a strategy that China has adopted in a variety of industries, including solar panels.
We cannot allow what occurred in other sectors to happen here, said Mr. Orlando. "These technologies are vital, and we cannot allow what happened elsewhere to happen here."
The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Central Intelligence Agency have increased their wide warnings to corporations and colleges about Chinese efforts to steal American technological secrets in recent years.
The response to some of those overtures has been skepticism, especially among academic institutions that feel the United States government is attempting to restrict the number of Chinese students who study at American institutions of higher learning.
Even while the United States government can approve many Chinese corporations' purchases of American enterprises, some Chinese investments are more difficult to monitor.
Mr. Orlando said that an American corporation that enters into a partnership with a Chinese company should take precautions to secure its data.