A group of well-known non-governmental organizations wrote a letter to the American Congress warning of the dangers Apple’s dependence on China could bring. The NGOs advocate stricter regulation of large US tech companies, including the American Economic Liberties Project, the Center for Digital Democracy, Demand Progress, Public Citizen and the Revolving Door Project.
Monopolies do not serve security
In the letter from the business news agency Bloomberg is present, the main question is whether planned anti-monopoly measures by the American legislature will have a negative impact on security. Lobby representatives had made this argument several times. The NGO Apple cites as an example. The company has a strong connection to China and its supply chain depends on the country. In addition, US technology companies helped China implement surveillance and censorship measures. Apple has recently tried to move more production to other countries. But this does not seem to be really successful. China is also an extremely important sales market for the group.
“Big tech isn’t about helping national security or the common good; it’s about securing monopoly profits and market power.” That is also written in the corporate structures. It is the government’s mission to protect national security, “not Mark Zuckererg’s.” Apple is trying, among other things, to prevent regulation of the App Store, which is on the rise around the world. Most recently, the group justified its ban on sideloading on the iPhone with security concerns.
Dependence on commercial firms
In addition to Apple, the letter also mentions Facebook, Amazon and Google as problematic companies with dependencies. A former Marine officer who now works for the American Economic Liberties Project said there are “multiple layers of risk in becoming dependent on a small number of private companies that are motivated by profit.” The companies themselves are a danger, but so is the market concentration, which is reducing the government’s shopping opportunities, for example in the military sector.