Earlier this year, privacy and civil liberties groups demanded a ban on cameras supplied by Hikvision, a Chinese state-owned surveillance firm, because of the company’s links to the violent persecution of Uyghur Muslims in Xinjang, China.
It has now been found that Hikvision is an associate member of the National Business Crime Solution (NBCS) which is a state-back non-profit initiative set up to prevent crime in the UK. This gives Hikvision privileged access to UK sensitive crime-related data. The partnership with NBCS gives access to data held by 43 police forces in England and Wales which can include details such as physical description of potential suspects and their gender.
Madeleine Stone, Legal and Policy Officer at Big Brother Watch said that the partnership between Hikvision and NBCS is “deeply alarming” given that Hikvision surveillance cameras have been acknowledged as a serious threat to national security by the UK Government.