Home » Biden orders investigation of overseas-produced auto parts, citing China risks – Wall Street Journal

Biden orders investigation of overseas-produced auto parts, citing China risks – Wall Street Journal

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Biden orders investigation of overseas-produced auto parts, citing China risks – Wall Street Journal

President Biden Orders Investigation into Chinese Auto Software, Citing National Security Risks

President Joe Biden has directed the U.S. Commerce Department to launch an investigation into automotive software produced overseas, particularly from China, due to concerns that it could pose a national security risk. The President stated that China’s efforts to dominate the global auto industry could potentially threaten the security of the United States.

Biden expressed worries that connected vehicles from China might collect sensitive data about U.S. citizens and infrastructure, which could then be transmitted back to China. He also highlighted the risk of these vehicles being remotely accessed or disabled, posing a potential threat to national security.

While currently, only a small number of cars sold in the U.S. are made in China and primarily use software developed by Western companies, industry analysts warn that Chinese auto companies are rapidly expanding globally. If these companies enter the U.S. market, the risks could increase significantly.

This move is part of a series of initiatives by the Biden administration to safeguard U.S. industry against perceived threats from Chinese cyberattacks. Auto industry executives are also concerned about the competitive challenge posed by Chinese automakers, whose low-cost electric vehicles are gaining popularity in various regions.

In addition to the investigation, the Biden administration is considering raising tariffs on certain Chinese-made goods, such as electric vehicles, to support the development of the U.S. clean energy industry. This has led to tensions with China, as the Chinese Foreign Ministry has criticized such efforts as discriminatory and not based on genuine national security concerns.

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The increasing use of Chinese-made components in critical infrastructure, including maritime ports, has raised alarms among U.S. officials, who fear vulnerabilities in these systems could be exploited by hackers. FBI Director Christopher Wray has issued warnings about the threat of cyber intrusions into vital U.S. infrastructure.

With the automotive industry becoming more reliant on advanced technology and connectivity, regulators are facing challenges in addressing data privacy concerns. California and European regulators are already investigating the data collection practices of smart cars, leading to some manufacturers being required to update software to limit data gathering.

While the immediate risk of Chinese software entering the U.S. market is deemed low by industry analysts, the potential for increased risks remains if Chinese automakers expand their presence. President Biden’s administration is taking a proactive approach to address these concerns and safeguard the U.S. auto industry against evolving threats from overseas.

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