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GCHQ to monitor Chinese-built nuclear plants in the UK

Just this morning I wrote a report (opens in new tab) on how a Chinese-state hacker group allegedly attacked seven American companies just days after the two countries agreed not to attack each other, and now the most populated country in the world is being dragged into another cyber-scandal, this time with the UK.

Britain's spies will oversee the creation of three nuclear power plants on the Island, fearing the Chinese could abuse them in the future. Chinese companies will be involved in the creation of three nuclear power plants in Britain, a move which should be officially announced in the coming days, during Chinese president Xi Jinping’s visit to Britain.

According to The Times (opens in new tab), UK government officials and cyber-security experts have been concerned for years that Chinese tech companies might be building backdoors into their technology being sold in Britain. Whitehall, for example, removed the firm’s video conferencing equipment from several government departments amid fears that it could be bugged. China has denied these allegations on multiple occasions.

If diplomatic relations between the UK and China were to ever break down, the Chinese could take control of these plants, which is a matter of national security, The Times wrote in a report.

Chinese companies team up with French energy behemoth EDF at Hinkley Point in Somerset and in Sizewell, Suffolk. China could also get the opportunity to design and build its own nuclear facility in Bradwell, Essex.

A GCHQ spokesman said: "GCHQ has a remit to support the cybersecurity of private-sector-owned critical national infrastructure projects, including in the civil nuclear sector and nuclear new builds, when invited to do so by the lead government department involved."

Sead Fadilpašić
Sead Fadilpašić

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.