SK hynix vice-chair denies selling to Huawei, calls for memory probe

PLUS: Hong Kong’s CoinEx crypto exchange frozen; Uber eyes off India; and more!

Asia In Brief SK hynix Vice Chairman Park Jung-ho has denied doing business with Huawei and called for further investigation of the memory in the Chinese tech champion's controversial Huawei Mate 60 Pro smartphone.

Huawei unveiled the handset on August 29, and it quickly turned heads – for all the wrong reasons. It contains a CPU thought to be beyond the capabilities of Chinese chipmakers, radios capable of 5G-like speeds that should not be available in China due to western sanctions, and DRAM that South Korean chipmaker SK hynix has not sold in China for years.

The very existence of the phone therefore suggests that sanctions on China are not as effective as hoped.

South Korean media reports Park Jung-ho last Friday told reporters SK hynix has had "absolutely no business" with Huawei.

"We are investigating the circumstances," he reportedly said, before stating "we need to check more closely what kind of DRAM is being used in that phone."

It's unclear if that's a suggestion the memory observed in the phone does not come from hynix, or if the Korean chip shop is still unsure exactly which of its products are inside.

– Simon Sharwood

Hong Kong crypto outlet freezes accounts after $53m 'hack'

Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange CoinEx has suspended deposit and withdrawal services of all crypto assets after detecting potential hacker activity that it described as "anomalous withdrawals from several hot wallet addresses used for temporary storage of user assets."

Remaining assets in the hot wallets were transferred to safe addresses and CoinEx said user assets will not be affected – the firm's User Asset Security Foundation will cover any losses. CoinEx advised against depositing assets into old addresses until the issue is fully resolved.

"It is currently preliminarily determined that the cause of the incident was the leakage of the hot wallet private key," said CoinEx, adding that it is still investigating the matter.

By Sunday, the exchange had completed 30 percent of wallet system reconstruction, according to its social media account. The company said that reconstruction efforts involve 211 chains and 737 cryptocurrencies.

No official attribution has been made regarding the missing crypto. Security firm CertiK predicted loss totals at $53 million and has pointed the finger at North Korea.

Singapore bans crypto crashers after finding additional failings

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) last Thursday issued a nine-year ban to the founders of collapsed crypto biz Three Arrows Capitol for failings including neglecting to implement appropriate risk management.

Kyle Davies and Zhu Su were banned from some fintech related activities after Three Arrows Capital collapsed in 2022 due to entanglements with Terraform Labs. In June of 2022, MAS reprimanded the firm for providing false information and exceeding the assets under management threshold allowed for a registered fund management company.

In its announcement of the ban, MAS revealed it found additional security failures beyond what it previously determined – including providing false information about portfolio manager Cheong Jun Yoong Arthur.

The MAS probe also found Three Arrows "did not have in place a risk management framework to identify, monitor, and address risks associated with the cryptocurrency and digital asset investments under its management."

Alibaba Cloud opens AI model to public

Alibaba Cloud said it would open its AI large language model, Tongyi Qianwen, to the public for both consumers and enterprise users. A free open source version is expected to be available in the next few weeks.

The model went into beta testing last April.

Uber eyes up India market

Ride-sharing giant Uber plans to double its presence in India, according to an interview with global vice president for public policy, Andrew Byrne in media outlet MoneyControl last week.

"We expect to double our presence in India, tap into more geographies, expand our services to include more three- and two-wheelers, which is where the biggest growth will be," said Byrne, adding that Uber was expanding in both Hyderabad and Bengaluru.

Infosys signs 1.5 billion deal that incorporates its AI solutions

Indian IT outsourcer Infosys signed a 1.5 billion deal with an unnamed global customer that leverages its platforms and AI solutions, it said last week in a stock exchange filing [PDF].

The deal covers a 15-year period and includes providing enhanced digital experiences, modernization and business operations services.

In other news …

Our Asia-Pacific coverage last week kicked off with a twist in the tale of Daniel Zhang, the former CEO of Alibaba, who was going to remain with the Chinese megacorp as it split into smaller businesses, but instead has found the door.

Alibaba also announced it is going to unleash an AI for financial advice, which should be every bit as reliable as image generators that don't know how many fingers a human has.

Chinese state-backed hackers have been accused of infiltrating a neighboring nation's electricity grid, in a style of attack that is becoming more common.

The question of whether or not iPhones have been banned from Chinese government departments went back and forth a bit, with a half-hearted non-denial denial from the Foreign Ministry.

Beijing made no such equivocations about freezing Sina Weibo – a social media platform kind of like Threads – for having allowed users to witness smutty content.

Speaking of Chinese social media, TikTok copped a paddling in Ireland for mishandling kids' personal data.

The world's largest chip foundry operator, Taiwan's TSMC, flagged uncertain market conditions as a reason for it to delay some orders.

A rare interplay of APAC space missions took place when a South Korean lunar orbiter took a snapshot of an Indian landing craft on the Moon's surface – it's not your grandparents' space race.

As well as landing on the Moon, India is selling its tech credentials to the world with a view to obtaining the status of a "developed economy" by 2047. ®

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