US retail giants pull Chinese surveillance tech from shelves

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In a statement to TechCrunch, Home Depot said it’s “committed to upholding the highest standards of ethical sourcing and we immediately stopped selling products from Lorex when this was brought to our attention.” Home Depot also stopped selling Ezviz products, a spokesperson confirmed. Best Buy said it was “discontinuing its relationship” with both Lorex and Ezviz.

Lowe’s, which did not comment, also removed Lorex from its shelves following inquiries from TechCrunch and video surveillance news site IPVM.

Lorex is a subsidiary of Dahua Technology, and Ezviz is a video surveillance camera brand owned by Hikvision. Dahua and Hikvision, both headquartered in China, were added to the U.S. government’s economic blacklist in 2019 after the companies were linked to China’s ongoing efforts to suppress ethnic minorities in Xinjiang, where most Uighur Muslims live.

The U.S. government says Beijing relies heavily on Hikvision, Dahua and other technology companies to supply the surveillance equipment to surveil the Uighur population. The Biden administration called the human rights abuses in Xinjiang a “genocide,” and blamed Chinese video surveillance manufacturers of having “been implicated in human rights violations and abuses in the implementation of China’s campaign of repression, mass arbitrary detention, and high-technology surveillance against Uighurs, Kazakhs, and other members of Muslim minority groups.”

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