Info-tech

Chinese firm monitoring over 10,000 influential Indians, including PM, President: Report

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on September 14, 2020 Published on September 14, 2020

Zhenhua Data Information Technology Co Ltd keeping tabs on 30 lakh entities; harvesting data from 500 crore news and social media inputs, and processing 15 crore pieces of data every day

A Shenzen-based technology firm has been monitoring over 10,000 influential individuals in India including PM Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind, the Indian Express reported on Monday.

The firm, Zhenhua Data Information Technology Co Ltd is harvesting data to monitor influential individuals across the globe, including India. The firm is said to have ties to the Chinese government and the Chinese Communist Party, the report said.

According to the investigation conducted by the Indian Express, the firm’s list of Indian targets included the Chief of Defence Staff Bipin Rawat, along with at least 60 senior serving and retired officers of the military. The list included 14 former chiefs of the three services, besides scientists from the Atomic Energy Commission and the Indian Space Research Organisation.

The revelations, if proven true, are significant, given the ongoing tensions between India and China related to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Ladakh region.

According to the report, the company has been keeping tabs on 30 lakh entities. It has been harvesting data from 500 crore news and social media inputs, and has been processing 15 crore pieces of data every day.

Besides the Indian Express, the source has shared the data with other news organisations — The Australian Financial Review, Italy’s Il Foglio, and The Daily Telegraph, London.

According to media reports, the company was monitoring influential individuals in other parts of the globe as well. Its global database also targeted more than 35,000 Australians, including Prime Minister Scott Morrison and billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes, the Australian Financial Review reported.

It also held information on senior politicians and other important leaders in the UK, The Telegraph reported.

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Published on September 14, 2020
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