How Microsoft Helped Build China’s Nightmare Surveillance | China Uncensored

How Microsoft Helped Build China’s Nightmare Surveillance | China Uncensored



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Did you know Microsoft, Google, and many other Western tech companies have partnered with Chinese military universities for research into cutting edge technology, including artificial intelligence, computer deep learning and facial recognition cameras and software. The fruits of this research are currently being used to persecute the ethnic Uighur Muslims of Xinjiang. Even MIT is in on the action.

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China is the largest police state in the world. It uses surveillance to go after dissidents
and minorities. And who helped them build that surveillance? Microsoft and other American tech companies! This is how they did it. Welcome back to China Uncensored. I’m Chris Chappell. The Chinese Communist Party has built the world’s most advanced systems of mass
surveillance. And this is the laboratory where the Chinese
regime tests this new technology: The region of Xinjiang, home to a mostly Muslim ethnic Uighur population. The surveillance includes a network of 40,000 facial recognition cameras, as well as collecting DNA samples, fingerprints, iris scans, and blood samples from most Xinjiang residents. It’s the dystopian nightmare everyone warned
us about! But we here in America didn’t simply sit
idle while the Chinese regime was building this Orwellian system. In fact, our companies actively helped! US tech companies knowingly worked with the
Chinese military, as well as with private Chinese companies contracted to do work for the Chinese government. The problem is what’s called dual-use technology— tech, like facial recognition, that has both civilian and military applications. There’s very little regulation of this. According to Foreign Policy, “U.S. Congress and government officials have yet to call for a review of the extent
of U.S. investment and research partnership entanglements.” The Commerce Department has proposed some rules for emerging tech, but the scope is unclear. Fortunately, at the end of last year, Microsoft truly stepped up to the plate. They said there’s a need for “public regulation and corporate responsibility.” Wow, good for Microsoft. Except… Microsoft ignored both public regulation and corporate responsibility by working with the Chinese military. According to a report last week in the Financial
Times, “Microsoft has worked with a Chinese military-run university on artificial intelligence research that could be used for surveillance and censorship.” Well, that’s awkward. Over the course of a few months last year, three published papers were co-written by the Microsoft team in Beijing, and researchers tied to China’s National University of Defense Technology. That university is controlled by China’s
top military body, the Central Military Commission. Which is headed… by Chinese presitator Xi Jinping. But how could Microsoft know all that? I mean, the University only has “defense technology” in its name and also the military symbol in its logo? That’s like going to Burger King and being surprised when they have burgers. And kings. One paper that Microsoft worked on describes “a new AI method to recreate detailed environmental
maps by analysing human faces, which experts say could have clear applications for surveillance and censorship.” What a coincidence! Because that’s the very same kind of technology they’re using in Xinjiang to track the Uighurs! But it’s dual-use technology. It could have civilian applications or military applications! How was Microsoft to know that the military
university would want to use it for military applications? Now US lawmakers are calling out Microsoft
for what they’ve done. Senator Ted Cruz, hey…nice beard, says “American companies need to understand
that doing business in China carries significant
and deepening risks. In addition to being targeted by the Chinese Communist party for espionage, American companies are increasingly at risk of boosting the Chinese Communist Party’s human rights atrocities.” That’s crazy. An American company knowingly helping a murderous regime persecute people? What are they, IBM? Senator Marco Rubio said Microsoft is complicit in the Chinese regime’s human rights abuses. “It is deeply disturbing that an American
company would be actively working with the Chinese
military to further build up the government's surveillance
network against its own people— an act that makes them complicit in aiding the Communist Chinese government’s totalitarian censorship apparatus and egregious human rights abuses.” In fact, he and Congressman Chris Smith spearheaded this bipartisan letter urging sanctions on
China for the treatment of Uighurs in Xinjiang. It was signed by 9 Republicans, 7 Democrats and one independent. To which I say, good for the Chinese Communist Party for finally bringing Democrats and Republicans
together. Now Microsoft has defended their work with the Chinese military university. Their official response to the Financial Times
was, “The research is guided by our principles, fully complies with US and local laws, and…is published to ensure transparency so that everyone can benefit from our work.” I mean, if their principles are to make lots
of money while technically not breaking any laws, then yeah, I guess they are guided by their
principles. My favorite Chinese state-run media, the Global
Times, defended Microsoft. It wrote that the Chinese director of the
research “slammed the accusations as subjective interpretation, saying that ‘he who has a mind to beat his dog will easily find his stick.’” Oh yeah? Well just because you pointed out the stick doesn’t mean you were beating a dog. Or something. It sounded more folksy in my head. The point is, this isn’t Microsoft’s only shady connection to mass surveillance in Xinjiang. In February, a European research team discovered
that a Chinese company called SenseNets had a totally open, unsecure database of 2.5 million Uighurs in Xinjiang. The records tracked everything from each person’s
ID number, birthday, address, ethnicity, employer… as well as updated GPS coordinates that could
tell if, for instance, this particular person was visiting a mosque. Any I know that sounds creepy, but have you considered this? Maybe the police are just tracking everyone’s
ID, birthday, and location so they know where
to deliver their state-sponsored birthday cake! Surprise! And that image is my birthday present to all
of you. But back to creepy surveillance. The company handling all this tracking, SenseNets, listed Microsoft as a partner on their website. Now, Microsoft has since said SenseNets was lying about that partnership… and offered, well, very little proof to back
that up. But SenseNets has removed Microsoft’s logo
now, so that’s good enough. But Microsoft’s relationship with Chinese
mass surveillance goes even deeper. The three papers the Financial Times discovered “underscore Microsoft’s…long-running
links to Chinese military-funded academia, including its operation of several ‘tech
clubs’ for students at Chinese universities known to have military links.” In fact, Bill Gates got Microsoft into China by building a personal relationship with former Chinese leader and murder toad Jiang Zemin. And Jiang Zemin’s son owned a 50% share of the MSN China website. But before you say, “Wow, Microsoft is the worst”… I should tell you that there are actually lots of American companies and organizations doing shady things in China. Like Cisco. Cisco helped build China’s Great Firewall. That’s the Communist Party’s internet
censorship system that prevents Chinese netizens from accessing dangerous websites, like YouTube. And a leaked internal powerpoint presentation showed that Cisco was very aware that one of the Chinese regime’s goals for the
Great Firewall was to target Falun Gong and other Chinese
dissidents, helpfully called “hostiles” here. Falun Gong is the main group the Chinese regime was persecuting at the
time. Falun Gong practitioners’ main thing is hour-long meditation and exercises— which, I have to say, is an incredibly boring
thing to put under surveillance. But hey, I’m not the one paying for it. So Cisco took a look at how the Chinese Communist
Party was monitoring and arresting all these people
and thought, what a great opportunity to sell more routers! Anyway, it’s not just Cisco. Top American University MIT has a wide reaching partnership with SenseTime. SenseTime is a world leader in AI facial recognition
technology. It also owns a 49% stake in SenseNets, that company keeping on eye on 2.5 million
Uighurs. The one that Microsoft claims is totally not
a partner. And SenseNets is mainly owned by its Chinese
parent company Netposa. In 2010, Netposa got some big investment from an American venture capital firm: Intel Capital. It’s “where great companies are built.” Which is good, because Netposa has been doing its own investing in US robotics startups. Like Bito robotics. It’s led by researchers at Carnegie Mellon
University. Netposa also invested in Exyn, a drone software company, which is competing in an AI challenge run
by DARPA. DARPA is the Defense Advanced Research Projects
Agency. That’s the part of the US Defense Department responsible for the development of emerging
technologies for use by the military. If you’re like me, you know about DARPA thanks to Metal Gear
Solid. You’re the DARPA chief Donald Anderson,
right? No, Snake! That’s Decoy Octopus disguised as DARPA Chief Donald Anderson, and the FOXDIE virus the Pentagon injected
you with is going to give him
a heart attack! But…what about the Pentagon? Pentagon? Nnnggghhhh!!! What is it?! Whyyyy?! Told ya. Most of what I know about DARPA comes from
a video game. Anyway, as I mentioned earlier, the Xinjiang government is also monitoring
Uighurs using their DNA. And guess who’s helping? More American companies! Up until this February, the American company Thermo Fisher was selling DNA sequencers directly to Xinjiang authorities. This Yale professor shared DNA samples with China’s Ministry of Public Security. I mean come on! How can you be a Yale professor and not understand what the “ministry of
public security” gets up to in an authoritarian state like
China? California-based Amax works on computer deep
learning. They have a partnership with China’s state-owned
Hikvision, and… …ok you know what? I’m just going to stop here otherwise this episode will be like 10 hours
long. And I don’t think our video editor Seamus
would like that. But these American tech companies should know
better! It’s well known that Chinese companies built the internment camps in Xinjiang. Chinese companies built the technology that monitors their every move. Chinese companies built the software that monitors Uighurs online. So maybe if you give these Chinese companies, or Chinese military researchers, your latest cutting edge technology, it might get used for some not so great things. But hey, it’s not like we learned any lessons
from history. So what do you think of how US companies have helped build China’s surveillance state? Let me know in the comments below. And now it’s time for me to answer a question from one of you— a fan who supports China Uncensored with a dollar or more per episode, by contributing through the crowdfunding website
Patreon. Spartaner 251 asks, “what's going to happen in the end? china will just send some little doctor or
someone to put all the blame on.” For clarity, that was in reference to a recent
episode I did about the Chinese Communist Party being put on trial for killing innocent prisoners of conscience for their organs. So I actually think it’s very likely they’re going to try to blame it on someone, or on a small group, instead of the Communist Party as a whole This is Huang Jiefu. He’s the face of China’s organ transplantation
system. Even though he hasn’t admitted to killing innocent people for their organs, he has gone on the air to make sure that any shady things that may or may not have
happened were some other guy’s fault. That guy is Zhou Yongkang, a high ranking Communist official who has now been purged. Now specifically he was talking about organs from executed prisoners. But Zhou Yongkang was a powerful figure in a political faction tied to former Chinese leader Jiang Zemin. He and his faction have been trying to oust current Chinese leader Xi Jinping. Which is why Xi has been trying to purge them
all. Like a Communist version of Pokemon. Now Jiang Zemin, Zhou Yongkang, and others in that faction are the ones who started this system of forced organ trafficking. So I have a feeling, as more evidence of these crimes against humanity come out, Xi is going to try real hard to blame it on
Jiang and his folks, so he himself doesn’t get the blame. Because in communist China, the captain is the only one who doesn’t have to go down with the ship. Thanks for your question, Spartaner. And thank you to all my 50-Cent Army soldiers who support China Uncensored. It’s only because of your support that we’ve
been able to cover topics that most other TV shows don’t want
to, because they prefer to get advertising dollars, rather than criticize the Chinese Communist
Party. Once again, I’m Chris Chappell. See you next time.

31 Replies to “How Microsoft Helped Build China’s Nightmare Surveillance | China Uncensored”

  1. China Uncensored

    Google is one of the Western tech companies are doing dangerous research with Chinese military universities. Are you surprised this episode was instantly demonetized?

  2. Pepper Real-robot

    Youve missed something NSA operates ON usa citizens from Menworth Hill UK to circumvent US laws on wiretap regulation, thats correct! ALL calls, texts, telex Every Thing is monitored…wake UP…to your OWN govt b4 criticising whats done overseas cos its happening evry day IN the good Ol us of A! 🙈🤔😜

  3. RUBICUNDUS ERATIUDAS

    Well, these poor government idiots are still trying to figure out what humans are like… They have discovered quite a lot through all their spying, though: humans like sex, they like to have some food to eat, paid vacation and some leisure time, equality, a certain amount of freedom and respect, some security, medical care, and no torture, pain or unnecessary suffering. How long long will it take these Big-Brother idiots to figure this out? Beats me…

  4. Mia Strong

    Chinese-owned university, University of the West, trains mostly foreign Buddhists (Chinese, included) to become military Chaplains. This can put them in a prime position to extract information from our service personnel. All the military is doing is regularly visiting the school to say "at-a-boy" and "good job". Where the fuck is Trump?

  5. Cannibal713

    For shame Microsoft, I would expect such behavior from Apple, but I thought better of you. Don't help murder toad keep track of enemies of the state.

  6. Donkey Kong

    Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, US streets are already monitoring US population already. Using facial & finger print recognition, or even without turning these features on your phone has transmitted your finger print & face to US govt. All this anti China focus is just to divert our attention to our “freedom” here, I put the word in quote.

  7. griffen98

    I am so thankful I am a Christian. I'm not religious the Bible condemns religion. We are in the end times. last days 1000 prophecies fulfilled so far. Only book that foretells the future. 2nd Corinthians chapter 4 verse 4. Revelations chapter 20. Few are saved

  8. Wayne Martin

    In Australia they are developing a system that’s similar. Australia is rolling a system that targets minority groups those earning less than $23,000 per year will be issued a ‘Cashless Debit Card’ which will eventually be synchronized with security cameras and facial recognition software. Inspired by Chinese communist government the expenditure of minority groups is closely monitored to determine behaviour such as to many Video Games, Pornography which information is sold to private companies.

  9. crazywaffleking

    At least China is protecting their population from Islamic terrorism. Imagine being in Europe and every other day there is a Muslim knife attack or truck running into civilians, sexual assault and violence is skyrocketing, and a mass immigration program in place which will see Europeans as a minority within their own countries in several decades, and if you dare object you get branded a racist or xenophobe. As dystopian as China is, at least in 50 years China will still be China. I'd be far more optimistic about the future as a random Chinese person than as a citizen of a Western European nation.

  10. tom wu

    On the other side, their surveillance system also makes the public much more safer by recognizing criminals who committed crimes and to track them down. That discourage people to commit crimes if they know they are being recorded. The cameras are used in public areas such as streets, bus and subway stations where people shouldn’t expect much of privacy.

  11. Steven Corcoran

    ya'know… if these companies helped develop the tech, and operates it for the regime.
    Doesn't that mean the US Gov can ask them to screw with those systems.

  12. Michael Hood

    The US Government is the largest Nazi State in the World
    It took on demonic Nazi scientific experts to hurt
    And intimidate people
    Around the world

  13. Matilde Torres

    the orwellian state is rising
    with the help of COMMUNIST, MARXIST RESEARCHERS
    AND SCIENTISTS INFILTRATED IN AMERICAN COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES.but very few people,are aware of this.

  14. Gio Montgomery

    Google legal team is discussing with marketing whether "dont be evil" can be used. Google Legal is feverishly looking through case law to redefine what "evil" legally means.
    Perhaps mass imprisonment without trial of political activists isnt evil by Google standards, beating and torture of political activists is only evil if you cant pretend not to know about it.
    How do these AI Google and M$ employees go to sleep at night and look in the mirror with the torture and repression they directly cause?
    They will be seen by History as the IBM of the 3rd Reich, development of tracking systems for Jewish concentration camp victims.
    The infamous concentration camp serial# tattoos were developed and numbers generated by IBMs tracking system. What will Google and Microsoft develop to track the Uighurs to their gas chambers? Google engineers you want to enlighten us?

  15. Bryan Merrill

    It's alarming to realize that Metal Gear Solid's convoluted plot involving countless conspiracies and betrayals was closer to the truth than any of us thought possible.

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