Lithuania is telling citizens to throw away Chinese phones; Here's why
Defence Deputy Minister Margiris Abukevicius told reporters that the report's recommendation is to avoid purchasing new Chinese phones and to dispose of those previously acquired as soon as practically practicable.
After a government study revealed that the devices had built-in censorship capabilities, Lithuania's Defense Ministry advised customers to avoid purchasing Chinese mobile phones and to throw away the ones they already owned. Xiaomi's flagship phones marketed in Europe have a built-in capacity to identify and filter words like "Free Tibet."
The feature had been disabled in Xiaomi's Mi 10T 5G phone firmware for the "European Union region", but may be activated remotely at any moment, according to the Defence Ministry's National Cyber Security Centre.
When introducing the study, Defence Deputy Minister Margiris Abukevicius told reporters that the report's recommendation is to avoid purchasing new Chinese phones and to dispose of those previously acquired as soon as practically practicable. Xiaomi did not reply to a request for comment from Reuters. Lithuanian-Chinese relations have lately deteriorated. After Taiwan announced that its mission in Lithuania would be renamed the Taiwanese Representative Office, China demanded that Lithuania withdraw its ambassador in Beijing and warned it would return its envoy to Vilnius.
Taiwanese embassies in Europe and the United States are concerned with the city of Taipei rather than the island itself, which China claims as its own. Last week, US President Joe Biden's national security advisor, Jake Sullivan, met with Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte and expressed support for her country in the face of Chinese pressure. According to the report, a security issue was discovered in Huawei's P40 5G phone, while none was found in the telephone of another Chinese manufacturer, OnePlus.
According to media reports, Huawei's agent in the Baltics, their phones do not transfer users' data abroad. According to the source, the list of phrases that might be restricted by the Xiaomi phone's system programmes, including the default internet browser, now comprises 449 terms in Chinese and is being updated regularly.