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China holds the most cyber-security patents

by on07 November 2023

Huawei and Tencent account for six of the top 10

China's presence is growing in cybersecurity technology, with companies such as Huawei and Tencent accounting for six of the top 10 global patent holdings in the sector. 

Chinese companies have made headway in technological fields that affect economic security, according to industry insiders, as they focus on fostering their tech.

The rankings, compiled by Nikkei in cooperation with US information services provider LexisNexis, are based on patents registered in 95 countries and regions, including Japan, the US, China, and the European Union. Patent registrations were screened for the cybersecurity field using such factors as the international patent classification, with filings of the same patent in multiple countries counted as a single patent.

In August, IBM led the rankings with 6,363 patents. Huawei Technologies came in second with 5,735 patents, and Tencent Holdings placed third with 4,803.

Other Chinese companies in the top 10 included financial services provider Ant Group in sixth with 3,922 patents, followed by power transmission company State Grid Corp. of China with 3,696, Alibaba Group Holding with 3,122 and sovereign wealth fund China Investment with 3,042.

Patent applications filed by Chinese companies have increased since around 2018, when the U.S. began to impose full-scale export controls on Chinese high-tech companies.

Compared with ten years ago, IBM's patent holdings increased by 1.5. In contrast, holdings for Huawei and Tencent were 2.3 times and 13 times higher, respectively.


Last modified on 07 November 2023
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