Chinese smart technologies are in many of the items you use. And they could pose a decent security risk.
Tuya, Inc. of Hangzhou is a technology firm that services more than 1,1000 areas from healthcare and agriculture to apartment management, and whose products are sold in over 220 countries. Affiliated with Tencent, Tuya provides platform as a service (PaaS) tech which enables products to be “smart” via an internet and wider network connection.
Some brands that have incorporated Tuya’s services into their products include Philips, TCL, and those involved in the production of Roku TV’s. Products with this technology can be found on Amazon, Walmart and Target, and in many businesses around the globe.
Household items and healthcare items from Tuya that collect personal information may lack the protections necessary to keep up with United States data protection laws. Cybersecurity experts are concerned over a new Chinese law that requires businesses to give up any and all collected data when the government asks for it.
The law states that enterprises and individuals must support and comply with Chinese law enforcement on data that concerns the national economy, security and public. It mentions that companies in China cannot provide foreign law officials with data that has been stored within the country.
The new legislation could quickly become a safety issue, since there’s a lack of U.S. legislation surrounding at-risk foreign software. There is a fear that classified government data could make its way to the Chinese government.
Potential risks from using this software might mean your information falls into the wrong hands. Internet of things (IoT) devices from groups like Tuya raise security and privacy concerns due to the lack of international standards for handling user data. Your home video feed could become compromised, as well as data recorded from home conversations. That information is, unfortunately, highly valuable to the right individual or group.
Staying aware of what you interact with on the internet and monitoring those interactions can be a good way to maintain good cyber hygiene. It’s difficult to remain fully alert, all the time, but exercising caution when on the web or using your devices can make a difference in how your data gets handled.
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