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Huawei's new 50x SuperZoom camera on its P30 Pro smartphone sparks privacy concerns
The 50x digital "SuperZoom" on Huawei's latest smartphone reportedly gives users the ability to read writing and take pictures of a small animal from hundreds of metres away, but there are fears the technology could also encourage some to record citizens punching in their ATM security pin from across the road.
Experts point out that while professional camera lenses and telescopes can already perform the same job, it's the portable and pocketable nature of the new devices that could be concerning.
Fergus Hanson, head of international cyber policy at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), said it was a "transformative leap" in terms of making that type of technology ubiquitous.
However, he said he could also imagine many scenarios where the same kind of technology might provide enhanced options for undermining security, such as reading sensitive documents from very far away.
"It's basically making everyone a potential spy," Mr Hanson said.
"Even if you might not have a line of sight of another human being, your every action may be scrutinised in enormous detail.
"I guess it's like this sort of creepy guy at the beach with a wide-angle lens camera, and bringing that to your everyday life, and having that person potentially around everywhere."
A similar privacy problem has already reared its ugly head in South Korea, where authorities are tackling a spy camera epidemic in which women have been filmed without their knowledge.