Coalition on Secure Technology

The Cellular IOT Module Threat

Cellular IoT Modules

Cellular IoT modules are at the heart of new and developing technology and ubiquitous in our lives, yet few of us are aware of their presence, let alone the threat they pose. They can be found in both domestic and industrial settings, from our watches, light bulbs and cars, to healthcare equipment, security cameras or satellite systems. 

The modules collect and share data using wireless technology, allowing us to enjoy smart speakers or remote medical monitoring equipment, but more worryingly they also monitor and control those systems and devices. 

The UK and other established democracies are increasingly reliant on this technology and increasingly vulnerable to the risks associated with its use too. More than 50% of the international market in Cellular IoT modules (CIMs) is already in the hands of three Chinese companies. Those of us who live in free and open countries face a threat to our national security and economic prosperity, not to mention to our privacy and human rights. 

Chinese Cellular (IoT) Modules: Countering the Threat, March 2024 Report

The Coalition on Secure Technology has launched a new report, Chinese Cellular (IoT) Modules: Countering the Threat, warning that Chinese ‘internet of things modules’ must be banned from our critical national infrastructure.

The report was created with the Council on Geostrategy, and highlights the threats posed by Chinese-made CIMs, the action already being taken by the UK and its allies, and provides a series of recommended actions needed to mitigate the risk.

Report by Charles Parton OBE

Charles Parton OBE spent 22 years of his 37-year diplomatic career working in or on China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. In 2017, he was chosen as the Foreign Affairs Select Committee’s Special Adviser on China. He is currently a Fellow at Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) and at the Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS), and an Associate Fellow in Indo-Pacific Geopolitics at the Council on Geostrategy. 

This report sets out the risks associated with the use of Cellular IoT modules whose provenance could be a threat to our security, our prosperity, our privacy and our human rights. 


The latest news and updates from CIM-Coalition.