china association of automobile manufacturers bulk order from china

china association of automobile manufacturers bulk order from china

here in this shanghai surveillance

center no resident goes unwatched

hundreds of millions of cameras are

installed all over

china we have algorithms that

automatically recognize certain

behaviors if someone isn’t wearing a

mask for example we immediately detect

this wrongdoing

no one can escape the camera’s gaze even

when taking out the trash

technological advancements in china

affect germany too

chinese corporations have long been

amassing troves of user data

i don’t have control over where my data

is sent whether it’s to the us china or


modern technology has its advantages

from cashless payment to

internet-equipped cars

we’re heading full throttle into a

high-tech future

but at what cost


the family embraces all the latest tech

the world’s evolving and father chenwei

believes it’s best to keep up wow

the chinese version of tiktok is a

favorite source of entertainment for 10

year old man faye and her parents

we watch videos of friends

that was just a friend’s young daughter

for example

they film cute videos of their children

and upload them

it gives us things to talk about

manfei is content using the tiny screen

on her smartwatch many of her classmates

have such devices rather than

smartphones she can use her watch to

make phone calls and even purchases

what does she


when my parents aren’t around and i

can’t remember the homework

i can double check what was said in our

class chat

i can also post what i do day to day in

the chat and take pictures

charlie onion

what is your name my name is miffy

like many other children in middle to

upper class families manfei takes

private english lessons even before the

covet 19 pandemic they were conducted


meanwhile mother shen chiong takes care

of the weekend shopping and the

electricity bill

all on her smartphone

the family lives in hangzhou


the city has grown rapidly into a

high-tech metropolis it’s now home to 10

million people


the uu family’s car is also equipped

with the latest technology they drive an

electric vehicle from chinese

manufacturer neo

it too has internet

hey nominee


the family passes by countless cameras

on their drive through the city

does that ever make each way uneasy


on the contrary

i feel a sense of security

the problem isn’t that data exists

the question is what’s done with it

the government is very strict with our

data as far as i know

i trust them

a couple hours drive away is shanghai

home to 24 million residents

each city district has a data hub where

all the information is collected

authorities call it the brain

foreign media are seldom allowed access

employees in this district alone have

access to 290 000 cameras and in some


they can control them directly

algorithms help staff sort through the


this monitor maps all construction sites

and the red dots flag irregularities

in one instance the ai detects a

construction worker not wearing a safety


co-developed the system

it took less than a year to get the

first version up and running

now she can monitor every resident from

this office

we’ve mapped the residential buildings

in the district

which ones are occupied

where there are vacancies

and can be called up in real time

even those who do not dispose of their

trash properly are recorded

residents who aren’t following the rules

are captured on camera from three

different angles

the so-called brain acts swiftly

whether it’s an illegally parked car or

unsolicited advertising offences can be

handled by patrol officers who are

connected to the control center via a

mobile app

as soon as the squads and volunteers in

residential districts spot an issue they

can report it and upload footage

they take a photo report the issue and

then our system automatically decides

which department to forward the matter




district is just one component to the

overarching surveillance plan the

chinese government is pushing across the


the goal is to have complete coverage in

all major public places such as train


street intersections and parks

china’s state media boasts that police

can identify every single person on the

street in just one second


in berlin researcher mariko ulberg is

keeping a close eye on china’s rapidly

growing security apparatus

orberg herself cannot enter china

anymore because her research is a thorn

in the side of authorities there

she knows all about surveillance centers

like the one in shanghai

for years she’s collected chinese data

that’s available online for instance

from public tenders

we’ve downloaded several million data

sets some have very detailed

dependencies where really different

surveillance schemes are explained in

great depth

for instance what type of camera to

install over which building entrance


the data sets also make clear why

chinese authorities are monitoring their

citizens in the first place

it’s beautifully described that

essentially people and human interaction

are the source of any social conflict

and social conflict is ultimately what

could cause difficulties for the

government if they can’t provide social


that’s all to say if you can monitor

human activity with cameras with

surveillance then you can also promptly

detect and defuse any conflict and

essentially have peace again

in shanghai there’s big money in data


that’s why huge corporations have set up

shop in china like the tech company

tencent the alibaba group and bite dance

which markets itself as cosmopolitan in

promo videos


as the parent company of tick tock by

dance is the world’s most valuable


tech talk was the most downloaded app of

2020. the app has close to 700 million

active users every month and is

especially popular among young people

across the world

that includes germany too of course

at the campus of the rua university

bochum in north rhine west failure finn

is an avid biker and his girlfriend jill

films for tick-tock

yep got it

the student and her boyfriend love the

social networking platform from china

is the text okay i think it’s fine okay

okay next

okay you’re done one thing they both

love about tick-tock anyone can get

famous in just seconds


my favorite part is that you don’t have

to do anything extraordinary you just

upload a video and with luck you’ll

instantly have a thousand likes 4 000


what you know about rolling down in the

deep when your brain goes


that’s awesome

very cool

all of finn and jill’s friends are now

on tick tock as well

the couple spends a lot of time on the


well it’s a bit embarrassing i don’t

want to admit how fast the time flies by

i have the feeling you don’t just look

at one or two videos you endlessly

scroll through

the secret to keep users scrolling

the algorithm

it tracks which videos jill and finn

like and keeps offering new ones which

they then like even more

as their tick-tock feeds become

increasingly tailored to their specific

tastes the app is gathering troves of

data in the background

but what exactly is it learning

what does tick tock know about the


the two are curious

we asked researchers at roe universities

institute for it security to take a

closer look at the app

and shed some light on what kind of data

tick tock’s collecting

so tick tock is installed on my phone

the two can now see in real time what

data is being transmitted

so while catchy tunes play in the

foreground the network scans through

personal data in the background

the approximate location the cell phone

model and of course every single like

and commented

i found it fascinating to see it all in

such depth

i’ve never seen it before

with tiktok i found it interesting and

surprising especially the fact that you

can see how long i’ve watched which

video or when i skip over it i was

shocked to see it lay down like that but

i think with time i’ll forget about that

too and just use tick-tock like i

normally do

with every scrap of data tick tock’s

algorithm is sharpened so the

personalized recommendations get better

ticktack has very good mechanisms in the

background to suggest the exact content

i like thereby maximizing the likelihood

that i’ll stay on the platform longer

that’s where they’re better than

facebook and instagram and that’s

exactly what makes this company so


on the other hand a platform like this

can also filter out certain content so

if certain political content or topics

aren’t desired they’re just not shown to

other users

tiktok is time and again accused of

pushing funny videos and suppressing

disagreeable content

videos that are critical of china don’t

stand a chance


case in point the tiananmen square


clips of the deadly 1989 protests can be

found here and there but often with very

few likes

it’s called shadow banning

content is not deleted but it’s shown so

rarely that it’s essentially made



tech talk declined our request for an

interview on this topic but the

company’s berlin office told us their

content moderation is not influenced by

any government including china’s

despite assertions otherwise expert

mariko ulbek says chinese companies may

be private on paper

but the state reserves the right to

intervene at any time

of course there’s ultimately the

possibility to have greater control over

these products even if the content isn’t

overtly censored it can be indirectly

censored through what’s pushed out what

becomes popular versus what’s made to


in beijing artist dang ifang knows what

it’s like for something to disappear at

the hands of chinese senses

because he works on politically

sensitive topics he’s been questioned

several times by police

in a performance last year he explored

the question is it even possible to walk

down a beijing street anymore without

being captured on camera

such as the focal length the angle

for each camera i identified the brand

and model so i had precise information

and knew the exact area it covered


he filmed a group of volunteers walking

along a stretch in the shadow of

beijing’s cameras

each step was choreographed

the group took over two hours to walk

about one kilometer

the videos have since been censored by

the authorities and can only be viewed

outside mainland china

the artist is also no longer permitted

to distribute the material


of course i’m disappointed

as an artist you create something you

invest work ideas and thoughts you try

to express yourself

you nurture it like you do a child and

then you can’t make your own work known

or show it to anyone

of course it’s frustrating

his latest project also grapples with

privacy concerns

and his critique extends beyond china

in his exhibition he publishes a

provocative fact sheet listing his own

personal information

in the wake of the covet 19 pandemic

data collection has ramped up even more

in china

health authorities use apps to try to

identify infected individuals potential


dung must scan a qr code with an app

before entering the gallery district


his temperature is also taken

the app looks at your health status

and can track your journey

after the scan it shows you if

everything is okay

if he had been in the same place as

someone infected with the coronavirus he

would have been denied entry

whenever curved 19 is again detected in

the country the app becomes everyone’s

ticket to public life to shop at a

grocery store to eat at a restaurant

even to get a taxi

back in bochum researchers at rural

university are comparing the chinese

health app to germany’s coronavirus app

the german version adheres to the

country’s notoriously strict data

protection laws

the app may only communicate anonymously

with other mobile devices in the

immediate vicinity

that means the data is processed locally

on my phone the chinese app works

completely differently

analyzing the app proves complicated

the data is encrypted but the

researchers can see that data is being

collected and transmitted at every

check-in location

this information that i’m at a certain

place at a certain time that is then

presumably transmitted to a central

place and that’s where the actual

analysis is done checking in itself is

of course problematic from a privacy

perspective because you then have very

detailed tracking

china has completely de-emphasized

privacy and freedom of movement during

the pandemic

in the brain of shanghai’s podong

district every suspected covert 19 case



we monitored a network of sensors in

front of apartments when the door sensor

registers people leaving the apartment

in violation of the rules we’re alerted

district staff and the health department

are then informed and can respond


what’s technologically possible is

carried out with little regard for

people’s privacy

criticism or resistance among the

population is virtually non-existent

even the usually critical artist dang

thinks collecting health data amid the

pandemic is useful

it’s an ethical trade-off

is human life or privacy more important

that’s the choice that technology

presents us

in this case i think everyone makes the

decision that life is more important


back in hangzhou the u family goes about

their daily routine which they believe

is easier thanks to technology

shopping without cash is the standard

ten-year-old manfaye can buy a drink to

go with a scan of her smart watch

the family leaves a trail of digital

footprints everywhere it goes

they’re seen by companies as well as

government agencies

china is among the countries collecting

the most amount of personal data

the government wants to go a step

further by implementing a ranking system

of individual behavior

the project is already being piloted in

the u family’s home city so they can

collect points

the better you score the more advantages

you have in your daily life i think it

encourages people to voluntarily follow

the rules

that’s how the social credit system

works in hangzhou

those who violate laws like not paying

their taxes on time or not paying back

loans have points deducted

people are also penalized for making

false statements in the country’s covet

19 app


people are rewarded for volunteering

staying fit through exercise or using

low emission transportation

donating blood also earns points

other cities also reward organ donors

or everyday things like returning books

to the library on time

but what precisely is collected and how

scores are calculated is not transparent


professor dai shin has been researching

the topic for years

the beijing subway system also has a

project that incentivizes commuters

people who follow the rules are allowed

to skip strict security checks at subway

entrances where every bag is normally



the ideas tend to be yes if you have

some records built up

based on your previous behavior then you

know there’s a determination that your

risk might be kind of really low and

then we can subject you to


you know

checks than other people

china wants obedient citizens

authorities entice with rewards and

threaten with punishment

professor dye tells us the state hasn’t

always been able to enforce laws but

that’s changing

rule breakers will be penalized more

harshly and comprehensively going


okay let’s say they don’t care about

paying fines that i impose

maybe they care about for example next

time they go to the tax authority asking

for a certain

type of you know tax relief they might


be interested in uh if they know you

know what they they they make me unhappy

they might also have trouble with you

then they actually have additional


is signing up for the social credit


one third of hangzhou’s residents have

registered so far

ui has to link the data from his

personal id

then he’ll get his score

that’s 493 points right after


perks start after 550 points

the launch of a nationwide rating system

was originally planned for 2020 but like

so many data projects it’s being tested

locally first

just trying something out is also common

in china association of automobile manufacturers


experimentation is a key business model

in the country

tech companies rely on savvy consumers

like the her family in shanghai

i’m here

play a kids movie


is the name of the voice assistant from

electronics manufacturer xiaomi a

chinese alexa

the her family loves smart technology

their tv lights and air conditioning can

all be controlled by a mobile app

even the refrigerator is high tech

offering reminders about their groceries

shelf life

a week before this onion goes bad i get

a reminder that i better use it up now

and i can always check my smartphone to

see what’s about to expire in the fridge

i don’t think i’m bragging when i say

that china is ahead of the us and europe

in terms of digital life

simply because there’s a huge range of

connected products for every area of


chinese technology has long been finding

its way into the homes of german


dusseldorf is home to xiaomi’s german


the managing director is excited to show

us around

the products that her family rave about

in china are also set to capture the

german market

the company is driven by the same goal

in both countries


it’s entirely transparent

this tv is one of the company’s latest


rice cookers electric kettles electric


xiaomi wants its products to be

integrated into all facets of daily life


for everything

you can control all devices on your



in germany xiaomi has quickly emerged as

the third most populous smartphone maker

not that german customers are making it

easy for them

we bring value to consumers


in a promotional video the company

promised top innovation imported at low


but a scandal last year undermined this

positive messaging

an i.t expert from london discovered

that cell phones from xiaomi transferred

highly personal user data to the company


international media reported users were

being spied on

researchers in bochum saw the news too


we saw that users browsing behavior was

sent to another server where it was

possible to track which smartphone

visited which website

so you could pinpoint in detail which

website i went to and at what time

you could also generate specific

tracking profiles from that

the researchers assess how data is being

transmitted by connecting the cell phone

inside this special box

xiaomi claimed it immediately stopped

collecting data after the allegations

the team at rural university confirmed

this too after analyzing the latest

browser version

xiaomi phones from germany no longer

transmit sensitive information in the


you can see that in germany or europe in


data protection is considered very


in fact the general data protection

regulation is the strictest in the world

in germany the topic plays an especially

important role compared to china where

consumers are suddenly very transparent


facial recognition is the basis of

chinese government surveillance

at han wang technology in beijing

developing artificial intelligence is

painstaking work

through countless clicks jiang jo han

and his team teach the computer to

correctly analyze crowds

deciphering what’s ahead versus the back

of the head

and what’s just an object

these are images from the web and from

movies where there are many people

the pandemic presented the company with

its biggest challenge yet the software

stopped working when suddenly everyone

was wearing a mask to protect themselves

against the virus

immediately launched a task force to

feed the computers new data

we then mobilized the whole company

everyone took pictures of themselves at

home pictures with masks in different


we all collected

i remember we started this in


and by mid-march

we released our facial recognition

algorithm with masks

we were the first in china


facial recognition in germany is a

different story

a pilot project ran at this berlin train

station for over a year

it was the largest trial to date with

three hundred test subjects

time and again german authorities flirt

with this technology

kensa ayid si abu is an expert in

robotics and artificial intelligence

she previously lived in china and is

fascinated by the potential of


still she has her reservations

it means no one is anonymous anymore

if i walk down the street people would

know exactly who i am where i live where

i’ve just been who i’m meeting and

that’s of course an invasion of privacy

the pilot project at berlin’s sutroids

train station was met with skepticism

and protests

the idea of the state monitoring the

population through facial recognition is

not popular in germany

the pilot project is now over

so how should new technologies be

developed when they can’t be tested

yeah most of my kind people don’t like

to take risks here which often leads to

us not being quite as fast

but when the product is out it’s much

better than all the others

and that’s always what we talk about

and what i would like to see as a tech

expert is that we take a bit more risk

and trust ourselves a bit more

just how quickly china crosses the line

between the use and abuse of technology

can be seen in xinjiang in the northwest

of the country

the chinese government markets the

region with its capital urumqi as an

exotic tourist destination

xinjiang is home to the wigas a mainly

muslim turkic ethnic group with their

own language and culture

the state has imposed an unprecedented

regime of surveillance and repression

in the past tensions between wigas and

the chinese state escalated to violence

now the chinese government exercises

complete control


this started in 2016 around 4 cameras

were installed everywhere more and more

every day


is from xinjiang but she now lives in

the netherlands

that’s why she can speak freely

back in her homeland people who openly

criticize the chinese government face


we visited urumchi to connect the dots

of kb newer cdx story

she lived in this residential area

dotted with surveillance cameras

all over urumqi facial recognition

software is embedded into building

entrances and the information is sent to

the police

so the state always knows who’s coming

and going

suddenly no one was allowed to visit us

only very close relatives we had to get

their visit approved with date time and

a reason

we were not able to verify many details

in her story

we couldn’t conduct interviews because

we too were under constant surveillance

policemen were everywhere on the street

equipped with mobile id scanners

at times a checkpoint appeared every few

hundred meters

heavily armed policemen came immediately

they were already standing by they put a

black bag over people’s heads and led

them away

i saw that very often to this day i

start shaking when i see a black plastic


in the northern part of the city between

prisons we managed to film a complex of

data centers where surveillance cameras

and other data are analyzed


the software identifies a suspect it

reports it directly to the police

officers on the scene via a mobile app

among those under surveillance

are people who recently moved

who traveled abroad

who appear in a government database of

potential suspects as well as their


who use an unusually large amount of


or whose cell phone wasn’t logged into a

network for a while

our investigation quickly faced



don’t ask who we are

what are you doing here

what did you film


is a teacher

in xinjiang she taught chinese at an

elementary school

then she was transferred to this complex

on the outskirts of the city ostensibly

to teach chinese to wiggers

the people’s hands and feet were tied

they moved as if in slow motion

then i understood that i had not been

taken to a school for adult education

but to a prison camp

the area was gradually transformed into

a high security wing with watchtowers

and barbed wire enclosures


those features have since disappeared


signs now say the area is an industrial

zone but it’s still closely guarded by

the police

you can’t go in there

we’re just walking around outside no you

can’t do that and there’s nothing to see

there either

china’s government denies that such

camps exist and refers to them as

vocational training centers

but international observers disagree

they say about a million people have

disappeared at least temporarily into

such internment camps

kb new acidic reported torture and

sexual violence

the women were also forced to

they couldn’t stop bleeding there was an

18 year old who lost so much blood she

died because she didn’t get care in time

i saw them carrying her out

the birth rate among wigas has dropped

dramatically since beijing’s total

repression began

several nations label their actions as a

genocide which the government rejects

questions about what’s happening in

xinjiang ricochet back to chinese

technology companies

don may and his colleagues in

pennsylvania in the united states

analyze surveillance equipment

while testing facial recognition

programs from the chinese company dawa

they discovered something they hadn’t

seen before

a category for race we’re getting his


the software labelled people as quote



and yellow what his gender is and that’s

not all

dawah developed a particular solution

designed for police to provide real-time

uyghur alarms and alerts


there’s clearly a financial incentive

by dawa to create this because

the demand is coming from the government

according to the team’s research dawa’s

system can send an alert to chinese

police if a person appears to be from

the muslim uighur minority group

dawa is the second largest supplier of

surveillance technology and sells its

products worldwide including to germany

but dawa is not the only chinese company

specializing in this tech

this is a patent application for facial

recognition technology filed jointly by

the global telecom company huawei

and the chinese academy of sciences

this technology also distinguishes

ethnic groups

han chinese

and wiggers

when you’re using technology

to specifically target ethnic minorities

that are being persecuted

and it’s labeled by the u.s government

as a genocide and your company is

developing solutions for that

it is an ethical concern

the patent application has meanwhile

been amended the word wigger has


the demand for artificial intelligence

has skyrocketed as a result of china’s

investment in surveillance

development is happening at breakneck


china aims to be the leader of this tech

in the next decade

the brave new world

many here celebrate modern technology

and are proud of the advancements

the future of high tech is taking shape


should china have total control of the

reins or should the rest of the world

get a say too