August 18, 2022

Chinese drone maker DJI and the US Congress

Featuring Alexandra Seymour

Source: The Diplomat

Journalist Mercy Kuo

The Diplomat author Mercy Kuo regularly engages subject-matter experts, policy practitioners, and strategic thinkers across the globe for their diverse insights into U.S. Asia policy. This conversation with Alexandra Seymour an associate fellow in the Technology and National Security Program, Center for a New American Security in Washington, D.C., is the 331st in “The Trans-Pacific View Insight Series.”

Why is DJI—a blacklisted Chinese drone maker—lobbying the U.S. Congress not to pass the American Security Drone Act (ASDA)?

Although the American Security Drone Act applies to UAS (unmanned aerial systems) “manufactured or assembled by certain entities,” it was written with DJI in mind. In proposing ASDA, legislators have been vocal about the national security risks DJI poses – namely their ability to steal intellectual property and amass large amounts of data, which could further Chinese Communist Party efforts. While this is not exclusive to DJI (hence ASDA’s applicability to other Chinese- or authoritarian regime-owned companies), the company has confirmed ties to the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau. This has raised significant human rights concerns on top of the national security risks.

Read the full interview and more from The Diplomat.

Authors

  • Alexandra Seymour

    Associate Fellow, Technology and National Security Program

    Alexandra Seymour is an Associate Fellow for the Technology and National Security Program at CNAS. Her work focuses on artificial intelligence standards and trustworthiness, d...