The danger of China’s Social Index

China’s Social Credit Index is the most frightening technological implementation you may not know about. Citizens and Businesses will be ranked on such things as credit score, social compliance, internet usage, and law abidance. Those with low scores can be denied travel privileges/visas, job interviews, and even low internet speeds to name a few. Scheduled for full implementation in 2020, China has already begun to blacklist debtors, test online social credit systems and deny new private company licenses.

Any data gathered by a private company becomes government property and can be folded into the vetting process…. making the scope of collection limitless. Phones, security systems, light bulbs, game consoles, TVs… If it’s connected, the Chinese government will have access to that data.

“Website operators can mine the traces of data that users exchange with websites and derive a full social profile, including location, friends, health records, insurance, private messages, financial position, gaming duration, smart home statistics, preferred newspapers, shopping history, and dating behavior.” (Wikipedia)

This is a country that already has one million Muslim Uighur detained into “re-education camps”. A brutal nightmare in itself (with reports of torture and sterilization), who is to say that this system isn’t primed to deal with the lowest 10% on the new Social Index.

Scared yet?

Back in 2016, Netflix’s series Black Orchid aired an episode called “The Nosedive“. It’s the story of a woman caught into the nightmare of Social Indexing. Watch it, or at least Wikipedia the plot. Once deemed “science fiction”, now “fact”.

Google is working with the Chinese Government to develop a censorable search engine under the name of Project Dragonfly.

Delta just announced it’s first “biometric terminal” in Atlanta using facial recognition to cut “2 seconds” out of a customer’s check-in/boarding process. The opt-in rate for this “feature” is an astounding 98%.

But just take a second to realize this is NOT the future. It is NOW. A plethora of information about you is ALREADY compiled. Some company somewhere has the info on you, which you have freely given. Where you go, what you buy, what you say and how you say it. While China has forced the process on its people, all it takes is someone in our government or one big business to convince us… “let’s compile all this info together to make life better”.

Further Reading:

 

Author: Rick Wiley

Rick is a 5x Dad, Husband, Web Developer, Net Security Nut and all around old geek.

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