A new scandal flared up around Xiaomi, one of the most popular in Russia and the world, a smartphone manufacturer, which occupies 17% of the global smartphone market.
Recently, as already reported by Novye Izvestia, this company blacklisted Crimea, it was impossible to activate its smartphones on the territory of this peninsula, and the sale of gadgets is officially prohibited.
The Chinese company operates in accordance with US export control laws, so it cannot export products to countries and territories such as Cuba, Iran, Syria, North Korea, Sudan and the Crimea region. Moreover, this ban existed before, but it was "paper". But now Xiaomi has moved on to blocking smartphones directly.
“Xiaomi's policy does not authorize the sale of this product or its provision in the territory in which you tried to activate it. Please contact sellers directly for more information”, - stated the message on the screens of remotely locked phones.
After numerous reports about this in the media and social networks, Xiaomi rolled back the blocking of its smartphones in Crimea and other regions, where it does not officially import them. The Chinese explained this confusion in a strange way: they say, they did not aim at a specific market, they simply "investigated" the gray import of smartphones. Allegedly, Xiaomi just wanted to make sure that previously locked phones weren't smuggled into the gray market.
A company spokesman announced: "The investigation has achieved significant results and the affected devices can now be unlocked".
And now a new scandal. The Lithuanian Ministry of Defense, or rather, their National Cyber Security Center, stated that some models of Chinese smartphones from Xiaomi have built-in censorship capabilities.
So far, it is known that Xiaomi smartphones have a built-in ability to identify and censor such terms as "Free Tibet", "Long live Taiwan independence" or "Democracy Movement" - there are 449 of them!
Lithuanian cybersecurity experts claim that these capabilities are turned off for the European Union region, but they can be turned on remotely at any time.
That is why the Ministry of Defense of Lithuania recommended that its citizens stop using the Huawei P40 5G and Xiaomi Mi 10T 5G smartphones, since a secret module was found in them, capable of censoring keywords and phrases written in both Chinese characters and Latin letters.
The Chinese immediately reacted to this message, stating: “Xiaomi devices do not censor user communication - neither input nor original. Xiaomi has never, and will not restrict, or block any personal use by users of our smartphones, such as searching, calling, browsing the web or using third-party communication software".
The company has assured that Xiaomi fully respects and protects the legal rights of all users, and adheres to the General Data Protection Regulation of the European Union (GDPR).
In response to the information in the article ( https://newizv.ru/news/tech/23-09-2021/opyat-xiaomi-smartfony-etoy-kompanii-ulichili-vo-vstroennoy-tsenzure?utm_source=yxnews&utm_medium=desktop ) about phones of Chinese manufacturers, provided by the Ministry of National Defense of the Republic of Lithuania, Xiaomi presents its position. Xiaomi devices do not censor user communication - neither inbound nor outbound. Xiaomi has never and will not restrict users' personal behavior such as browsing the Internet, searching for information, making calls or using third-party communication software. Xiaomi respects and protects the rights of all its users and complies with the requirements of the European Union General Data Protection Regulation (EU GDPR).