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Biden bans China Telecom phone carrier SPYING while US offices PAX Chinese firm raided by the FBI

PAX, a Chinese company is one of the largest digital payment providers in the world with more than 60 million devices in use across 120 countries

Federal investigators have raided the Florida offices of a Chinese credit card reader company that is believed to have been behind dozens of cyberattacks around the world.

PAX Technology that makes point-of-sale devices with more than 60 million in use across 120 countries. 

The Jacksonville raid is believed to be tied to reports that the system PAX operates was used in cyberattacks on U.S. and European organizations. 

Agents with the FBI and Department of Homeland Security raided a local PAX Technology warehouse reports WOKV.

‘FBI and MI5 are conducting an intensive investigation into PAX,’ a source told the station. ‘A major US payment processor began asking questions about network packets originating from PAX terminals and were not given any good answers.’ 

The raid is part of the Biden administration’s extended efforts, many of which began under then-President Donald Trump to limit access to U.S. technology and markets for state-owned Chinese companies due to concern they were security risks or helping with military development. 

The FBI, Department of Homeland Security, and other agencies raided the offices of PAX, a Chinese point-of-sale manufacturer in Jacksonville

The FBI, Department of Homeland Security, and other agencies raided the offices of PAX, a Chinese point-of-sale manufacturer in Jacksonville

The Chinese company is one of the largest digital payment providers in the world with more than 60 million devices in use across 120 countries

The Chinese company is one of the largest digital payment providers in the world with more than 60 million devices in use across 120 countries

On Wednesday, U.S. regulators announced they are expelling a unit of China Telecom Ltd., one of the country’s three major state-owned carriers, from the American market, describing them as a national security threat amid rising tensions with Beijing.

China Telecom Americas Corp. is required to stop providing domestic interstate and international service in the United States within 60 days, under an order approved Tuesday by the Federal Communications Commission. 

The FCC cited the danger that Beijing might use the company to eavesdrop or disrupt U.S. communications and ‘engage in espionage and other harmful activities against the United States.

The banning of China Telecom comes as the Pentagon’s top general said that China’s recent test of an earth-circling hypersonic missile was akin to the Soviet Union’s stunning launch of the world’s first satellite, Sputnik, in 1957, which sparked the superpowers’ space race.

US regulators have revoked the authorization for China Telecom's American subsidiary to conduct business in the United States

US regulators have revoked the authorization for China Telecom’s American subsidiary to conduct business in the United States

Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, confirmed for the first time the Chinese test of a nuclear-capable missile that would be very difficult to defend against.

‘What we saw was a very significant event of a test of a hypersonic weapon system. And it is very concerning,’ Milley told Bloomberg TV.

‘I don’t know if it’s quite a Sputnik moment, but I think it’s very close to that,’ he said.

‘It’s a very significant technological event that occurred… and it has all of our attention.’

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted on Monday to revoke China Telecom's license to operate in the US, citing "threats to national security"

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted on Monday to revoke China Telecom’s license to operate in the US, citing ‘threats to national security’

The US Department of Defense had previously declined to confirm the test, first reported on October 16.

The August test launch appeared to catch Washington by surprise.

The missile circled the Earth at a low altitude and a velocity of more than five times the speed of sound, although it missed its target by more than 19 miles. 

China denied the report, saying it was a routine test of a reusable space vehicle.

'What we saw was a very significant event of a test of a hypersonic weapon system. And it is very concerning. I don't know if it's quite a Sputnik moment, but I think it's very close to that,' United States Army General Mark A. Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said

‘What we saw was a very significant event of a test of a hypersonic weapon system. And it is very concerning. I don’t know if it’s quite a Sputnik moment, but I think it’s very close to that,’ United States Army General Mark A. Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said

Hypersonics are the new frontier in missile technology, because they fly lower and so are harder to detect than ballistic missiles, can reach targets more quickly, and are maneuverable.

That makes them more dangerous, particularly if mounted with nuclear warheads.

On the telecommunications front, China Telecom is among companies that were expelled from U.S. stock exchanges under an order by Trump barring Americans from investing in them.

The FCC said in 2019 that due to security concerns it planned to revoke licenses granted two decades earlier to China Telecom and another state-owned carrier, China Unicom Ltd. It rejected a license application by the third carrier, China Mobile Ltd.

‘China Telecom Americas’ ownership and control by the Chinese government raise significant national security and law enforcement risks,’ said an FCC announcement.

The company’s conduct and communications to U.S. government agencies ‘demonstrate a lack of candor, trustworthiness and reliability,’ the FCC said, without giving details.

Hypersonic weapons are the new frontier in missile technology, because they fly lower and so are harder to detect than ballistic missiles, can reach targets more quickly, and are maneuverable

Hypersonic weapons are the new frontier in missile technology, because they fly lower and so are harder to detect than ballistic missiles, can reach targets more quickly, and are maneuverable

The firm’s ‘ownership and control by the Chinese government raise significant national security and law enforcement risks,’ the statement read. 

It warned that it gives opportunities for Beijing ‘to access, store, disrupt, and/or misroute US communications, which in turn allow them to engage in espionage and other harmful activities against the United States.’

‘The FCC´s decision is disappointing,’ China Telecom spokesman Ge Yu said response to the news. ‘We plan to pursue all available options while continuing to serve our customers.’ 

The Chinese government has said it would take steps to protect its companies but has yet to announce any retaliation over their status in the U.S. market.

The telecom companies are on a U.S. government blacklist of entities deemed by the Pentagon to be involved in military development. 

Others include state-owned oil companies, suppliers of processor chips and video technology and construction, aerospace, rocketry, shipbuilding and nuclear power equipment companies. 

Last year, the FCC designated Huawei Technologies Co and ZTE Corp, as national security threats to communications networks

Last year, the FCC designated Huawei Technologies Co and ZTE Corp, as national security threats to communications networks

The FCC has taken other actions against Chinese telecoms and other companies.

Last year, the FCC designated Huawei Technologies Co and ZTE Corp, as national security threats to communications networks – a declaration that barred U.S. firms from tapping an $8.3 billion government fund to purchase equipment from the companies. 

The FCC in December adopted rules requiring carriers with ZTE or Huawei equipment to ‘rip and replace’ that equipment.

In March, the FCC designated five Chinese companies as posing a threat to national security under a 2019 law, including Huawei, ZTE, Hytera Communications, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co and Zhejiang Dahua Technology Co. 


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