Ukrainian YouTuber Finds Her AI Clone Selling Russian Goods on Chinese Internet

washington —  Speaking Mandarin and promoting love for China, countless videos of foreign-looking women made with artificial intelligence started popping up on Chinese social media platforms around the Lunar New Year earlier this month. The avatars in the videos are created with online images that are stolen, reproduced and repurposed so that even the women in real life recognize themselves in the videos. Olga Loiek is one of those women. She’s a 20-year-old Ukrainian who studies cognitive science at the University of Pennsylvania. A couple of months ago, Loiek started…

US Investigating Potential Security Threats From Connected Cars

The United States announced Thursday it is launching an investigation into potential security threats posed by connected vehicles that utilize technology from countries of concern such as China. U.S. President Joe Biden said he is directing the Commerce Department to lead the probe and determine what actions may be necessary to ensure that cars driving on U.S. roads do not undermine the country’s national security. “Most cars these days are ‘connected’ – they are like smart phones on wheels,” Biden said in a statement. “These cars are connected to our…

China Users on Banned Social Platforms Need Protection, Advocates Say

washington —  Rights advocates are urging international social media platforms to do more to prevent Chinese authorities from obtaining the personal information of users. The call comes after two popular Chinese social media influencers alleged on X and YouTube that police in China were investigating their followers and had called some in for questioning. Social media platforms such as X and YouTube and thousands of websites — from The New York Times to the BBC and VOA — are blocked in China by the country’s Great Firewall. But increasingly, even…

Renewal of US-China Science and Tech Pact Faces Hurdles

STATE DEPARTMENT —  With a science and technology agreement between the United States and People’s Republic of China due to expire Tuesday, the State Department said it is negotiating to “amend, extend, and strengthen protections within” the agreement but declined to specify if the U.S. would extend the deal. “We are not able to provide information at this time on specific U.S. negotiating positions or on whether the agreement will be extended past its current expiration date,” a State Department spokesperson told VOA. The Science and Technology Cooperation Agreement is…

Hackers for sale: what we’ve learned from China’s massive cyber leak

A massive data leak from a Chinese cybersecurity firm has offered a rare glimpse into the inner workings of Beijing-linked hackers. Analysts say the leak is a treasure-trove of intel into the day-to-day operations of China’s hacking programme, which the FBI says is the biggest of any country. The company, I-Soon, has yet to confirm the leak is genuine and has not responded to a request for comment. As of Friday, the leaked data was removed from the online software repository GitHub, where it had been posted. From staff complaints…

Huge cybersecurity leak lifts lid on world of China’s hackers for hire

A big leak of data from a Chinese cybersecurity firm has revealed state security agents paying tens of thousands of pounds to harvest data on targets, including foreign governments, while hackers hoover up huge amounts of information on any person or institution who might be of interest to their prospective clients. The cache of more than 500 leaked files from the Chinese firm I-Soon was posted on the developer website Github and is thought by cybersecurity experts to be genuine. Some of the targets discussed include Nato and the UK…

China to Show Off Airliner at Singapore Show Amid Supply Crunch

SINGAPORE —  Singapore will play host to Asia’s biggest air show next week for the first time since the end of COVID border restrictions, with regional travel rebounding and the military side of the show bristling with defensive systems and nervous arms buyers. An expected full return of civil demand in Asia is being tested by an industry-wide supply crunch and macroeconomic headwinds, however — especially in the world’s second-largest aviation market, China — while geopolitical tensions have put weapons in the spotlight. “Supply chain issues are limiting the ability…

China’s VPN Usage Nearly Doubles Amid Internet Censorship

WASHINGTON —  Last year, VPN usage in China nearly doubled, according to data from IT education news outlet Techopedia, this despite the country’s strict regime of internet controls of everything from overseas websites to online games. China’s “Great Firewall” is one of the world’s most comprehensive internet censorship regimes, preventing citizens from accessing websites like Instagram, Wikipedia and YouTube, as well most major news organizations including VOA. VPNs are outlawed in China because they allow users to jump the “Great Firewall” and securely connect to the internet outside the country…

Microsoft Says It Caught Hackers From China, Russia and Iran Using Its AI Tools

State-backed hackers from Russia, China, and Iran have been using tools from Microsoft-backed OpenAI to hone their skills and trick their targets, according to a report published on Wednesday. Microsoft said in its report it had tracked hacking groups affiliated with Russian military intelligence, Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, and the Chinese and North Korean governments as they tried to perfect their hacking campaigns using large language models. Those computer programs, often called artificial intelligence, draw on massive amounts of text to generate human-sounding responses. The company announced the find as it…

Post-Brexit watchdog ‘ready’ to investigate flood of cheaper Chinese electric cars

The head of Britain’s post-Brexit trade watchdog has said it is ready to follow Brussels in launching an investigation into Chinese companies flooding the market for electric cars, but the government has not asked it to do so. Oliver Griffiths, the chief executive of the UK’s Trade Remedies Authority (TRA), which advises the government on trade defence, said it was keeping lines of communication open with ministers and had been in close contact with the car industry. “We’ll be ready to go if anyone does come to us,” he told…