The German cybersecurity watchdog BSI has found no traces of a censorship function on Xiaomi phones. A spokesperson reported this to Reuters after the BSI opened an investigation at the end of September following warnings from the Lithuanian cybersecurity center.

“The BSI has not noticed any anomalies in the investigation that do not require further investigation or any measures to be taken,” a spokesperson for the German cybersecurity watchdog BSI told Reuters journalists. That investigation was launched in late September shortly after the Lithuanian cybersecurity center warned NKSC about privacy issues in Chinese Android phones from Xiaomi and Huawei.

At the end of September, the Lithuanian NKSC had opened an investigation into the network traffic of three Chinese Android phones. Those phones were the OnePlus 8T, the Huawei P40 Pro and the Xiaomi Mi 10T. No security risks were found with the OnePlus 8T phone and the Huawei P40 Pro warned about the included app store, the Huawei App Gallery. This would, in some cases, redirect customers to web pages of other download stores such as APKPure, APKMonk and Aptoide, which in turn host malware.

The NKSC found several problems with the Xiaomi Mi 10T. First of all, the Lithuanian center discovered that the supplied Mi Browser forwarded data to Google Analytics, but also to the Chinese Sensor Data. This usually involved innocent information such as whether or not a user had dark mode turned on on his smartphone, but also whether a user was using a VPN service and which VPN service it was.

The NKSC also found that the Xiaomi Mi 10T downloaded a list of 449 terms on the very first launch of some apps. That list could then serve to block terms in all kinds of apps on the smartphone, such as the browser app or the music app. The function to block terms on Xiaomi devices was disabled in Europe according to the NKSC, but according to the center it could be switched on without user intervention.

Xiaomi responded shortly after the Lithuanian NKSC’s findings, denying censorship. “Xiaomi has never and will never restrict or block the behavior of our smartphone users,” it said at the time. Journalists from XDA-Developers gave more context about the term list. They suggested that it was a file that is only used to filter advertisements. Tweakers wrote a background article explaining the role of the Lithuanian cybersecurity center and looking for the reason for the presence of such a list of terms.

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