Fortune reports: "The United States on Tuesday imposed sanctions against 13 Chinese and North Korean organizations Washington accused of helping evade nuclear restrictions against Pyongyang and supporting the country through trade of commodities like coal. The U.S. Treasury announced the action one day after President Donald Trump put North Korea back on a list of state sponsors of terrorism, on its website. The new curbs show the Trump administration’s focus on hurting trade between China and North Korea, which it sees as key to deterring Pyongyang from its ambition to develop a nuclear-tipped missile capable of hitting the United States. 'This designation will impose further sanctions and penalties on North Korea and related persons, and supports our maximum pressure campaign to isolate the murderous regime,' said Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin. The latest sanctions included blacklisting three Chinese companies, Dandong Kehua Economy & Trade Co., Dandong Xianghe Trading Co., and Dandong Hongda Trade Co., which the Treasury Department said had done more than $750 million in combined trade with North Korea over almost five years until Aug. 31."
TIME reports: "China’s former top internet regulator and censor is being investigated by the ruling Communist Party’s anti-corruption arm, the agency said Tuesday. The party’s anti-graft watchdog agency said in a brief statement on its website that Lu Wei is suspected of 'serious violations of discipline.' Until Tuesday’s announcement, Lu had been deputy head of the party’s propaganda department. Lu was known as a hard-liner responsible for leading the government’s efforts to tighten control over domestic cyberspace and championing the party’s position that governments have a right to filter and censor their countries’ internet. He wielded enormous power over what 700 million Chinese internet users could view online and acted as gatekeeper for technology companies wishing to do business in China. No details were given in Tuesday’s announcement, which comes after a party congress at which President Xi Jinping was given a second five-year term as party chief. Lu is the most senior Chinese official to be investigated since the party congress closed late last month."
The Hill comments: "The headline alone is terrifying: “Surveillance cameras made by China are hanging all over the U.S.” Scarier still, it’s true — the Chinese government owns a 42 percent stake in Hikvision, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of cameras and other video surveillance equipment. Its products are used at public sites and private companies around the world, including multiple U.S. government facilities. It’s easy to extrapolate some bleak scenarios based on this information: could the Chinese government be building 'back doors' into Hikvision systems to facilitate state-sponsored snooping on sensitive American sites? The company vigorously denies this possibility, though it brings up echoes of 2012 when Chinese tech firms Huawei and ZTE landed in hot water for potentially threatening U.S. national security. But while cyberespionage will always grab headlines, there’s a quieter, more pervasive security threat at play here. China is still the engine behind global tech hardware manufacturing, an industry which continues to boom as internet-connected devices become an increasingly common part of our daily lives. The so-called 'internet of things' is growing exponentially, including everything from the surveillance cameras Hikvision makes to your fitness tracker or smart thermostat... Simply put, we’re all going to be using Chinese technology and devices as a critical component of our connected lives moving forward. How consumers, companies, and governments effectively manage that reality will have widespread implications for digital security and privacy protection."