Internet expert exposes unsecured database believed to be targeting Muslim minorities
'A Chinese surveillance company has been tracking the movements of at least 2.5 million residents in a province where Muslim minorities have been the target of a far-reaching security clampdown, internet experts have found.
Victor Gevers, of the non-profit group GDI.Foundation, which supports an open internet, discovered an unsecured database online that contained the name, sex, ethnicity, ID number, birth date and employer of residents in China’s western province of Xinjiang.
It also included 6.7m location points of “trackers” that residents had passed in the last 24 hours, including mosques, hotels, police stations and internet cafes. Trackers can be CCTV cameras as well as handheld devices equipped with cameras or ID scanners.
In Emin county, trackers at five mosques in five villages were listed as having been “successfully registered”. The database, by Shenzhen-based SenseNets Technology, appeared to have been open and accessible by anyone for the last seven months.
“This insecure face recognition/personal verification solution is built and operated for only one goal. It’s a ‘Muslim tracker’ funded by Chinese authorities in the province of Xinjiang to keep track of Uyghur Muslims,” Gevers posted on Twitter.'
Read more: Chinese surveillance company tracking 2.5 million Xinjiang residents