Daily US Times: Lithuania’s Defence Ministry has warned that consumers should throw away their Chinese phones and avoid buying new ones.
A report by the country’s National Cyber Security Centre tested 5G mobiles from Chinese manufacturers.
It claimed that one Huawei model had security flaws, while another Xiaomi phone had built-in censorship tools.
Xiaomi said it does not censor communications and Huawei said no user data is sent externally.
Defence Deputy Minister Margiris Abukevicius said: “Our recommendation is to not buy new Chinese phones, and to get rid of those already purchased as fast as reasonably possible.”
The report said Xiaomi’s flagship Mi 10T 5G phone was found to have software that could detect and censor terms including “democracy movement”, “Free Tibet” or “Long live Taiwan independence”.
The report highlighted more than 449 terms that could be detected and censored by the Xiaomi phone’s system apps, including the default internet browser.
This capability had been switched off on these models in Europe, but the report argued it could be remotely activated at any time.
A spokesperson for Xiaomi said: “Xiaomi’s devices do not censor communications to or from its users. Xiaomi has never and will never restrict or block any personal behaviours of our smartphone users, such as searching, calling, web browsing or the use of third-party communication software.”
The firm is fully GDPR compliant, the spokesperson added.
The research also found the Xiaomi smartphones were transferring encrypted phone usage data to a server in Singapore.