Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in an interview aired on Feb. 4 that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) will use artificial intelligence to comb through troves of personal data on U.S. citizens recovered from Chinese technology and apps and use the intelligence as a weapon to strong-arm the United States.
“They will use that information. They will use artificial intelligence to gather it up. And then they will turn around and tell us that if we don’t act in a way that’s consistent with what the Chinese Communist Party wants, they will impose real costs on the United States,” Pompeo told Fox News’ Maria Bartiromo.
Pompeo was responding to a question on whether the administration of President Joe Biden should keep in place the sanctions and other restrictions imposed on Chinese companies by former President Donald Trump.
“The flip side is these technologies that infiltrate the United States and infiltrate Europe are things that our kids use, that we use, that are in our cars, that are in our television sets, that are in our handsets and phones. This information, also American information, whether it’s our personal information about where we live and who we hang out with, or information about our medical conditions and our DNA, that information goes back to the Chinese national security state,” Pompeo said.
Asked if the information could be used as blackmail, he said, “Yes, absolutely.
“It will be used for bad intent. It will be used to harm the United States of America, and those sanctions were put in place by our administration to protect the American people from these twin evils.”
The Trump administration imposed restrictions and sanctions on a variety of Chinese technology firms, including telecommunications giants Huawei and ZTE.
Pompeo added that he warned U.S. allies about the dangers posed by the CCP. The regime, he said, has consistently broken its promises over the past two decades and should be dealt with under the motto “distrust but verify.”
“I spent a lot of time traveling the world and talking to leaders from Europe, to Asia, to South America, reminding them that while China might show up with a little bit of money, the intent behind that was to create leverage and power and that they ought not to join an idea that is anti-Western, anti-Democratic, in any important way,” Pompeo said.
Pompeo has been warning that the CCP has already infiltrated the United States and is working to influence the levers of power from the local level on up to Washington.
“Not only has the CCP destroyed millions of American jobs, but they’re behind the gates. They’re lobbying members of Congress. They’re working our school boards and city councils to try and change our way of life,” he wrote on Twitter on Feb. 3. “We, along with our allies, must take the China threat seriously.”
Pompeo was among a group of recently departed Trump administration officials sanctioned by Beijing over their tough approach to the CCP.