“If the beach was a target for espionage, the Russians would send submarines and human frogs in the dark of the night and with great secrecy they would collect buckets of sand and return them to Moscow, while the Americans would target the beach with satellites and produce data chips, while the Chinese would send a thousand tourists whose mission is to collect one grain of sand each. And when they come back they will be asked to hand it over and they will end up learning more about sand than anyone else.”
(Quote from the literature of the US intelligence community to describe the spread and strength of Chinese intelligence)
No one could have spotted anything suspicious of Chi Mak, who had all the traditional hallmarks of a Chinese-American, with a relatively short stature, an Asian face, a hyperactivity incompatible with his over-60s, and a relatively traditional job in Power Paragon, a mid-level defense company that develops power systems for the US Navy, is located in Anaheim, California, on the West Coast of the United States.
Mac immigrated to America from Hong Kong in the late 1970s, and has been a model employee at Power Paragon since 1988, and company employees often resort to him to solve problems they face. Outside of work, Mac is satisfied. And his wife, Rebecca, led a quiet life in which they were not very social. Despite their nearly two-and-a-half decades on American soil, Rebecca spoke poor English, and would not go anywhere without her husband except perhaps for traditional walks around the neighborhood in the morning.
It was coincidence,, and coincidence alone, that made Mac and his family a valuable and secret target for the FBI, who then began investigating the records of Chinese espionage on American soil in 2001, which made many Americans of Chinese origin. , who occupy prominent positions in vital industrial sectors such as technology and defense, made them the target of secret pursuits, and the old man of Chinese origin “Che Mak” was one of the targets of those investigations, which began by placing him under constant and intense surveillance, as investigators installed a hidden camera outside his home in Downey County. In California, to follow his movements and lists of his visitors, they also planted listening devices to listen to his private conversations and phone calls.
The recordings and telephone conversations did not reveal much of what sparked the investigators' appetite, except for Mac and his wife's infatuation with the Chinese Communist leader "Mao Zedong", which the couple saw as being misunderstood and appreciated by history, like Stalin, as they described it, which prompted the investigators to direct their research towards a stage New, and took advantage of a vacation that Mac and his wife spent in Alaska in order to carry out a secret intrusion into his home through a specialized examination team that has the ability to hide the traces of a thorough search as well.
Despite the dim lights, the investigators had little difficulty seeing the piles of documents scattered carelessly everywhere, behind doors, above the desk, and even at the dinner table. US, information on new technologies under development, drawings and information on the new, state-of-the-art Virginia submarines and their weaponry, as well as tax returns, travel documents, and lists of names for many other Chinese engineers living in California.
Simultaneously, as reputed writer on espionage and cybercrime Yodeji Bhattacharjee recounted in his lengthy piece for The New Yorker, the FBI was also monitoring Tai Mak, Che Mak’s younger brother, and Tai was an engineer. To broadcast on a Hong Kong-based satellite channel partly owned by the Chinese government, he lived in Alhambra, 12 miles from Downey, with his wife, Fook Lee, and their two teenage sons, and the two families met every few weeks at the Chinese restaurant in Alhambra, where there are usually many Chinese Americans.
The surveillance was so extensive, intense, and meticulous, that federal agents were examining both families' trash after it had been dumped for months in a row without finding any evidence, until early February 2005, almost a year after the surveillance began, when Detective Jesse found Murray found the remains of a torn paper written in Chinese in Chi and Rebecca's trash, which she collected and carried to the office, where she assembled and reassembled them to eventually form two complete documents, one handwritten and the other machine-printed. The destroyer “DDX” was in addition to a set of naval technologies and programs, and the printed paper contained instructions to go to specific conferences and events to collect information, and only here American investigators became certain that the two documents were task lists provided by Chinese intelligence.
Later in October of the same year, FBI investigators made another secret break-in into Chi Mak's home and installed a hidden camera above the dining room table. A laptop while talking to Rebecca about the information he was transcribing, it was all about marine technology, including a document about a less noisy, harder-to-detect submarine engine still in development, a project Mac was responsible for at Power Paragon.
During subsequent conversations, investigators learned that Tai and Fook were planning to leave California for China, and while they were leaving US soil, authorities arrested Tai and Fook at Los Angeles airport after they found an encrypted disk containing files copied by Chi Mak. The same night, Che and Rebecca Mac were arrested, and as the investigations progressed, the facts (4) were emerging little by little. Mac was not just an employee of Chinese origin who was recruited by his country, but was a trained spy carefully planted by Chinese intelligence to collect information about One of the most vital industrial sectors in the West, Mac began his work with Chinese intelligence years ago in Hong Kong, where his task was to monitor the movements of US Navy ships in and out of Hong Kong port during the Vietnam War, a task that Mac was doing diligently while working in A sewing shop owned by his sister at that time.
Ultimately, Mack, Rebecca, Tai, and Fook were convicted of conspiring to export US military technology to China, with one serving a twenty-four-year prison sentence and the other receiving ten years, while Fook was deported to China and followed by Rebecca three years later, although the case was closed. In theory, it has made a great resonance in the American intelligence community, highlighting not only the ongoing rounds of the secretive intelligence conflict between China and the United States, the chapters of which still extend today, but also the traditions and unfamiliar tactics of the Chinese intelligence services, one of the most efficient, complex, and apparently the least well known in the world.
Throughout its history, China has had a legacy of powerful and massive land military forces that worked as human great wall to protect the country against external invasion.
The simple facts state that China is the largest country in the world in terms of population with over 1.41 billion people, and the second largest country in terms of area with a geographic area of about 9.6 million square kilometers, and it also has the largest army in the world with a total of 2.2 million soldiers (basic forces without reserves), the largest exporter in the world, exporting $2.2 trillion annually, the second largest economy on earth today and expected to exceed the largest American economy by 2030, the largest lender and the largest holder of capital globally, Otherwise, Beijing has the largest base of native speakers of one language in the world, Mandarin, rivaling the number of native English speakers around the world.
It seems that these facts of the huge Chinese manpower cast a shadow over the Chinese legacy not only in the economy, society or even politics, but also in military affairs, as China has had throughout its history a legacy of strong and massive ground military forces that worked as a human great fracture to protect the country against External invasion, as for the intelligence aspect, and despite the fact that Chinese intelligence did not acquire the same global reputation that the CIA, for example, or even the Soviet KGB, the Chinese intelligence retained its own character of espionage operations. Enormous in number and widespread, its effects are felt all over the world.
The culture of intelligence and information gathering has gained immense importance for the Chinese thousands of years ago, specifically since the era of the famous Chinese theorist “Sun Tzu” the author of the classic art of war, who stressed the importance of the availability of accurate information to win various battles, but China’s approach to obtaining information has always remained far away. On the general logic and bearing its own mark (6), and it was often done through a combination of three main ways: the first is what is known as human waves, where Beijing exploits its huge human assets to recruit thousands of Chinese to collect huge amounts of information, while the second is recruitment and dependence on the services of Millions of Chinese origin in all countries of the world and periodically extract information from them to reach deeper levels of network analysis of the acquired vast data. The third way is to slowly and patiently cultivate foreign agents in order to carry out active long-term espionage operations.
Taken together, these methods reflect a distinct brand (7) of Chinese intelligence work that relies not only on recruiting influential agents for direct and sensitive information, but rather on flooding adversary intelligence and counterintelligence services with thousands of small-scale espionage operations, many of which appear to be of no value. The final Chinese product often lies in the sum of those slow and complex processes, which reflect the traditional human traits of the Chinese who are known for their patience, perseverance and hard work.
This way of working also finds its roots in Chinese social norms, specifically in the centuries-old Chinese “Guansky” tradition of exploiting slow and powerful networks of interpersonal relationships to influence events, a norm that has been developed and transmitted to Chinese business and economy8. And later to the field of intelligence, which has been lagging behind at the structural and technical level for a long time, while the intelligence industry and the war of minds and information gathering were developing in the Western Hemisphere at a rapid pace.
The modern history of Chinese intelligence goes back to the pre-revolutionary Chinese communist era, when the Chinese Nationalist Party (Kuomintang) established its own investigation department during the reign of Chiang Kai-shek, the military leader who led the campaign to unify China against warlords and became the country's first president in 1928, and later The Chinese Communists developed intelligence work after seizing power in the 1940s, and established a number of agencies that eventually evolved to form the Department of Social Affairs, the first structural intelligence service in China's history.
During that period, Shanghai was the most prominent global espionage center in East Asia, where it witnessed the activity of nationalists, communists, warlords factions and the Trinity gangs, in addition to the Soviet, French, Japanese, British and American intelligence services. He participated in the communist movement, before traveling to receive training in intelligence work in Moscow in the late twenties and early thirties, to return later to China and announce his alignment with Mao Zedong and gain his blind trust, becoming (9) “Kang” the most prominent head of the Department of Social Affairs since its founding, and father The founder of Chinese intelligence, with a resounding reputation for the brutal tactics he used against opponents of power in general and personal enemies of Mao Zedong in particular.
But the structure of Chinese intelligence remained remarkably limited and simple until the decisive victory of the Communists over the Nationalists in 1949, when the intelligence functions were assigned to the Ministry of Public Security, which was primarily concerned with maintaining internal security along the periphery of the country and monitoring foreigners, and this meant developing an extensive network of agents for the purposes of Political surveillance, as for foreign intelligence activities, did not begin to appear clearly until the mid-fifties, when the Communist Party established the Central Investigation Department to carry out this task, but the department was dissolved in the early seventies (in 1971) in the midst of the Cultural Revolution, to return again in the middle of the decade Same with Deng Xiaoping's rise to power.
Ping's rise came with the emergence of a new approach to Chinese intelligence work. With his desire to recreate the global image of his country, severely shaken by the Cultural Revolution and the transition towards a market economy, "Ping" directed his intelligence services to stop using embassy employees for spying purposes, and instead rely Journalists and businessmen, as part of a grand strategy known as “hide the brightness and feed the ambiguity,” where Ping wanted to expand the economic and military capabilities of his country so that it could keep pace with the West, but he wanted to do so without engaging in many rhetorical wars and as secretly as possible.
In order to achieve this purpose, in 1983, Deng established the Ministry of State Security by merging the Central Investigation Department and the espionage units of the Ministry of Public Security, so that the ministry would become China's main civilian intelligence service, and under it all the official and unofficial intelligence structures in the country were organized, except for the army, which He maintained his own military intelligence service, under the supervision of the Chinese Communist Party and not under the direct control of the government.
Until then, China had not made any iconic fingerprints on the global espionage arenas, while its intelligence services had earned a low reputation for its bureaucracy and inefficiency, but this reputation was about to change with the legendary success of Larry Wu Tai Chen, who knows Today he is the most successful spy in Chinese history since the era of "Sun Tzu".
Chen was an American citizen of Chinese descent, and began his life as a translator in the US Army before being recruited through the Liaison Office of the Ministry of State Security in Fuzhou during the Korean War. , to begin 30 years of official work as a double agent with absolute loyalty to Beijing and a list of sensitive information from the heart of the American intelligence that was passed to Beijing first hand, and perhaps the most important is the information related to the plans of US President “Richard Nixon” and his administration for rapprochement with China, which plans are believed to be leaked Giving Beijing a higher position in the subsequent negotiations with the US side.
Larry Wu Tai Chen is the most successful spy in Chinese history. Chen's work was surprisingly precise and skilled as he had not visited China since his intelligence work, and his meetings with Chinese agents in other countries such as Hong Kong and Canada took several minutes at most, and most importantly, he was followed for three decades Completed by one unchanged Chinese intelligence official, in order to maintain secure, narrow, and hardly monitorable channels of communication. In exchange for his services, Chen was given large sums of money that he invested cleverly in low-income real estate, before his identity was revealed in 1984 to be tried and convicted of espionage, before he died in his cell in what was officially described as a "suicide". In February 1986.
It was the Chen case that drew the world's attention, and Washington in particular, to the sophistication and sophistication of China's intelligence apparatus, which today consists of a wide array of intelligence agencies, military departments, corporate offices, party organs, and even research institutions, universities, and the media, all under two parallel structures. from oversight, whether by the government, or the Communist Party of China, whose institutions hold actual power in the country at the expense of the government, which performs operational and administrative tasks.
At the top of these agencies comes the octopus Ministry of State Security, which is very similar in structure to the Soviet KGB, but with greater decentralization. This is the main difference in the Chinese approach to recruiting intelligence officers at university levels in order to more accurately choose the qualified, and to have better chances of checking their backgrounds, their contact with foreign parties, and whether they have a history of traveling or residing abroad. The Ministry of State Security also places great emphasis on the language proficiency of its employees. It also runs an intensive language school for officers, other than placing them for a long time under the supervision of a special department of internal security known as the ninth office, and its main function is to confront any possible defections within the ministry.
Ultimately, each officer who has passed the various stages of the assignment is tasked with managing a group of agents commonly referred to as assets or items, and they are spread around the world in a decentralized network run by the primary officers, according to a leaked document from the intelligence services firm Stratfor. , dating back to 2010 and including “WikiLeaks”, the FBI estimated the number of these elements in the United States alone at hundreds of thousands of individuals, some of whom work permanently and others temporarily, and according to statistics of the same year, there are more than 17 million Americans of Asian descent. Four million of them are of Chinese origin, in addition to a huge network of shell companies and front companies numbering nearly three thousand companies.
The methods of Chinese intelligence in recruiting these elements vary, from arousing national motives to threatening methods and putting pressure on their families in China. In the case of valuable assets that provide intelligence information of high importance, financial temptations are often added, and some of them are called “ocean bottom fish.” , a Chinese term equivalent to the concept of “sleeper cells” in Western intelligence culture, these fish often receive months of training inside China, and they are mainly used to gather information and fill gaps in communication networks, and sometimes to spread rumors in the host country.
The Ministry of State Security of China undertakes a portfolio of multiple and varied tasks, including trying to influence the foreign policy of other countries, which is the classic objective of all intelligence operations anywhere, as well as collecting information about political, economic and security movements affecting China, and monitoring intelligence operations directed against Beijing, studying the biographies of foreign politicians and intelligence officers, especially those in charge of the Chinese file in any country, collecting information about Chinese citizens defecting abroad, and finally collecting and transmitting detailed information about the technological capabilities of foreign countries.
Although the Ministry of State Security remains the most important and famous Chinese intelligence agency, it is not the only agency that carries out intelligence tasks in the country, as the ministry shares some of these tasks with the Ministry of Public Security, which is the main national security organization in China, and it supervises all local and regional police departments and handles The task of following up on dissidents and opponents, and it enjoys wide powers in the cyber field, which creates a kind of conflict and competition with the Ministry of State Security, but “state security” remains the predominant word in these conflicts.
The Ministry of State Security manages its intelligence operations based on the business units that Chinese citizens engage in, known as “danwei,” institutions that are used (13) by the Communist Party to organize all Chinese and distribute government benefits such as education vacancies, job opportunities, and health care. The primary structures that connect all citizens to the party, and each unit is run by a party cadre, and often contains a security department that cooperates with the intelligence services and keeps files on all unit members including family history, ideological affinity, socioeconomic status, and other matters.
As a member of any business unit, a Chinese citizen can be recruited to do anything on behalf of the state, including reporting on the activities of fellow citizens and foreigners. Unlike the Ministry of State Security, the Ministry of Public Security tends to recruit low-skilled agents to gather information. Often they assign multiple agents for the same goal, which allows the ministry to compare and analyze information to identify areas of conflict and reach accurate and valid conclusions, and only trained agents are appointed for higher-level tasks such as infiltrating and dismantling opposition organizations from within.
Military Intelligence, or the Second Department of the People's Liberation Army, is the third organization in the organizational structure of the Chinese intelligence service, a bureaucratic structure (14) comparable in structure and size to the Ministry of State Security, but it focuses mainly on acquiring foreign technologies to develop China's military capabilities, and collecting Tactical information from China's border regions, where the device deals with 24 different ethnic groups recruited to collect information from Vietnam, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau.
Military intelligence also undertakes the task of finding agents for the Chinese arms industry, and it is keen to hide the PLA’s fingerprints in these deals by concluding them through international arms brokers, and Beijing has succeeded in concluding such deals with North Korea, Argentina, Pakistan, Iran, Syria and Saudi Arabia. The Military Intelligence is keen to conduct extensive investigations into the backgrounds of the proposed arms brokers and choose the most appropriate among them, and these deals are often used as leverage for political influence in the targeted countries.
Otherwise, the Military Intelligence through the so-called Third Office supervises the operation of Chinese military attaches in foreign embassies as open intelligence collection points, which explains the involvement of a number of Chinese attaches in secret intelligence activities, including two of the attaches who were arrested in the United States. The United States attempted to purchase NSA secrets in 1987, as well as similar attempts to illegally purchase American military technology, including TOW missiles, Sidewinder missiles, F-14 fighter models, and others.
It seems that the Third Office of Chinese Military Intelligence succeeded in developing its methods over time, and made progress in penetrating foreign intelligence agencies, and the most prominent of these issues were revealed in 2006 when (15) CIA analyst Ronald Montaperto admitted to possessing and passing secret documents to Chinese military attaches, which represented a major development in the Chinese human intelligence approach by expanding reliance on foreign agents, despite this, the capabilities of Chinese military intelligence did not stop there, as it was gradually keen to mix between human intelligence and new technologies, so a special office was established known as The Seventh Office of the Department of Cyber Intelligence Operations in cooperation with several government institutes and legions of Chinese hackers, and the People's Liberation Army established the Third Department, the Special Agency for Signal-Intelligence, which is the third largest agency of its kind in the world after its counterparts in each of the states United States and Russia.
Other than these intelligence structures, there are two Chinese organizations that have historically engaged in covert action, a strategy that has not been at the top of Beijing's agenda. Communism around the world, and these links were used to foment rebellion and arm communist factions around the world during the Cold War, before turning to espionage and giving up covert work. Historically in monitoring and suppressing dissidents in exile, its officers have usually operated under diplomatic cover as members of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, unlike China's other major intelligence services.
Despite the multiplicity of Chinese official intelligence agencies and the diversity of their activities, the surprising paradox is that many estimates indicate that 50-70% of Chinese espionage operations are carried out by non-intelligence agencies, as the Chinese Communist Party has been using Chinese governmental and semi-governmental agencies. , academies, universities, companies and even the nominally independent media, in carrying out espionage activities, and these bodies often compete with each other, but they all share the distinctive mosaic approach to the way information is collected in China, an approach that depends on the installation of small pieces with extreme precision to reach a comprehensive overall picture, Indeed, China went further in this approach, freeing all Chinese institutions operating abroad to collect information in legal and illegal ways to serve various commercial and political goals, to become the first country in the world to transform intelligence gathering - fully consciously - into an industry open source.
At the head of government agencies that engage in intelligence activity informally is the National Defense Administration of Science, Technology and Industry (SASTIND), which is the Chinese equivalent of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in the United States, and there is also the Chinese news agency, Xinhua, which historically served as a cover For Chinese intelligence officers and agents, whose mission is not limited to producing news for the public, but prepares secret summaries for decision-makers, and many of its journalists are often associated with intelligence services. Overseas, and the Chinese Ministry of Education, which monitors and communicates with overseas Chinese students, and both agencies employ their followers in the process of collecting information for the benefit of the government.
However, none of the aforementioned parties play a role in the modern Chinese espionage system as much as the huge role of the huge fleet of Chinese state-owned companies and participation in espionage operations and information gathering, and according to available information, there are more than 150 thousand Chinese state-owned companies, At least two thousand of them are owned by the central government, and they include space companies, defense and technology companies, and research institutes, while the government directly manages 102 major companies of these companies that are critical to national and economic security, and the organizational committees of the Communist Party supervise appointments in these vital institutions, as well as It oversees the operations within these companies, as well as many times the number of private companies that engage in the information gathering industry for commercial purposes.
As a recent study conducted by “Nicolas Eftemiadis” for the Asian affairs newspaper “The Diplomat,” which was based on the analysis of 274 clear cases of Chinese foreign espionage since 2000, 48% of these incidents were for government and private companies (26%) For government companies and 22% for private companies), while the share of the Ministry of State Security and Military Intelligence combined did not exceed 41% of these cases, which indicates the significant role of what we can call “corporate intelligence” in the modern Chinese espionage system, a role that is likely to increase. Considering the directives issued by Chinese President Xi Jinping during the past year 2018, directives that asked companies to amend their internal regulations to put the concepts of Chinese loyalty and belonging above economic profit.
This Chinese reliance on corporate intelligence tells us another, more obvious fact about the modern goals of Beijing’s intelligence activity. Unlike the traditional priorities of foreign intelligence services that focus on gathering politically and militarily sensitive information, the collection of advanced technologies, especially military technology and dual-usable technologies, remains the main goal of Chinese intelligence. In the second place comes the collection of information related to technical and commercial excellence to serve the country's ambitious industrial strategy known as "Made in China 2025".
In order to do this, the Chinese intelligence machine resorts to a combination of three different methods, the first of which is to push Chinese nationals to obtain technologies and skills in the required sectors through scientific exchange programs supervised by the intelligence services, and the second method (18) is to exploit the huge financial portfolios of companies The Chinese company to buy foreign companies that produce the desired technologies, as happened in the acquisition of the American chip design company “ATop Tech” by Avatar Integrated Systems, a Chinese company based in Hong Kong, last year.
This Chinese approach to the acquisition of emerging technology companies dates back to the late last decade and the beginning of the current decade, and is characterized by a steady rise that can be easily observed. By 2014, the volume of Chinese investments in American technology companies had risen to $2.3 billion, before jumping almost four times to reach To $9.8 billion during 2015, an approach that continues even though it has been slowed by the restrictions imposed by the Trump administration on Chinese companies, which prompts China to circumvent these restrictions, as Beijing uses front companies to purchase targeted technologies on behalf of the Chinese without appearing The first is in the picture, which is not a new method after all, as the United States had previously arrested a famous Hong Kong businessman in the mid-1980s for allegedly buying radar surveillance technology and illegally shipping it to Beijing.
As for the third way that China is trying to bridge the technological gap, it simply depends on deception and stealing the secrets and techniques of Western companies, relying on a mixture between human intelligence and hacking operations, and as a result, China, according to a report published by the CrowdStrike Foundation for cyber security last year. 2018, was the country that used the most hacker services, as it used them to penetrate various sectors including biotechnology, mining, pharmaceuticals, and transportation. In 2011, for example, Chinese experts recruited an Austrian client working for an American electrical connector company that oversees a sophisticated wind turbine management program. The client was persuaded to hand over the source code to the Chinese company Sinovel for $1.7 million. Sinovel has resorted to employing hackers to infiltrate the American company's servers and steal its legal strategy.
The same method was used in China’s efforts to steal semiconductor technology from the American company Micron in Idaho last year, as the Taiwanese semiconductor company “united microelectronics corporation” hired managers at Micron to steal trade secrets related to semiconductor production, before providing them Tempting offers for the same employees who brought in Micron's technologies, while the Taiwanese company sub-partnered with China's state-owned Jinhua Corporation to supply the technology to Beijing.
We can apply the same rule to dozens, if not hundreds, of open source Chinese government espionage operations that took place in the last decade specifically, starting with a Chinese company or front company working with China seeking to partner with one of the targeted American companies. At the same time, it is making parallel efforts to steal the secrets of the targeted technology, whether through human agents, through the employment of hackers, or through a combination of both methods.
But it seems that Beijing is no longer content with individual industrial espionage, and has recently resorted to developing its efforts towards an approach of collective espionage, as Bloomberg revealed last October that a Chinese military unit had developed a computer chip slightly larger than the size of a grain of rice. With advanced storage and network capabilities and advanced processing efficiency, this chip was implanted in Chinese factories that manufacture components for “Supremico”, the largest company to produce motherboards in the world, from which the modified boards were sold in China to more than 30 major companies, including Amazon and Apple and other major American companies.
Apparently, Chinese companies, both state and private, practice this approach of industrial espionage not only in the United States but also in Europe, which is consistent with the information that was revealed last year about the planning of a Chinese intelligence cell to steal designs and information from a turboprop aircraft company. French airline has an office in Sochi by planting malware inside the French company's servers, while the Chinese hired a prominent employee in the information technology department within the same company to cover the effects of the Chinese hackers, according to the indictments issued in the case.
In fact, this was not the first reported incident of Chinese spying on French companies, which apparently goes back many years.The most prominent chapters of this file date back to late 2010, when the French Renault company suddenly suspended three employees in its advanced program for electric cars. From working on the pretext of leaking the secrets of the program to China in exchange for huge sums of money, sums described at the time as the largest intelligence financial investment for China since the era of “Larry Chen”.
Chinese activity in Europe is not limited to France alone, of course, as concerns arise about similar Chinese activities in many European countries, led by Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, and certainly Germany, the largest economy in the European Union, where more than 15% of European companies reported facts Different types of data theft only between 2015 and 2017, activities that cost these companies huge losses, as the bill for electronic espionage losses in Europe alone is estimated at more than 60 billion euros annually, a number that is expected to increase with the increase in the value of the company at risk, and the increase in the value of the services it provides.
The economic losses of Chinese industrial espionage do not stop only at the borders of Europe, as it is clear, and the United States, the first target of Chinese activities, is the largest affected, as industrial espionage does not contribute to bridging the technological gap between the United States and China, especially in military fields such as autonomous robots. avionics, marine systems and space technologies, but it also causes billions of dollars in economic losses to the American economy annually.
Conservative estimates indicate that the American economy loses about $320 billion annually in the bill for intellectual property theft, and these losses are distributed between the loss of profitable industry contracts and the decline in local production capabilities, and between the imbalance in the trade balance and the loss of jobs, as the U.S. Congress estimates that intellectual property theft operations from China It led to the loss of two million jobs in the United States, as well as a cumulative effect of trillions of dollars as a result of the decline in the competitiveness of American products. Method R&D costs and market research enable them to offer these products at competitive prices.
Nevertheless, it would be an exaggeration to claim that China is conducting its large-scale espionage activities solely with the aim of inflicting losses on Western economies and achieving commercial supremacy, although that goal is not entirely absent from Beijing’s agenda, but these efforts should be viewed in its broader context as part of a race where China is waging a heavy-handed battle against the hegemony of the Western world, and political rounds, economic battles, military skirmishes, and even intelligence wars are complementary parts within that broader context of demonstrating, or at least participating, worthy of global leadership.
That message was apparent in the dramatic way in which Beijing drew the features of the largest intelligence victory it achieved against the United States, perhaps in its history. Paradoxically, this victory occurred in the field of traditional intelligence, in which Washington excelled, when the Chinese regime last year executed more than Of the thirty Chinese agents working for the US Central Intelligence Agency in the country, after the Chinese intelligence in the months prior to the mass execution succeeded in hacking the CIA’s encrypted communications program, which led to the complete disabling and stopping of the main US intelligence program for collecting information in China. .
In Washington, U.S. officials were clear in acknowledging that it was the largest loss of intelligence assets the agency had suffered since the revelations that former CIA agent Aldrich Ames and FBI agent Robert Hansen had spied for Russia in 1994 and 2001, respectively, which led to To launch a series of investigations that revealed that Beijing succeeded in recruiting a former CIA officer named Jerry Chun Shing, it appears that it used him not only to report the lists of clients he knew, but to help decipher the encrypted communications system known as “Quafcom” To set up the entire American network.
The US-Chinese network was then just another chapter in the intelligence conflict between China and Washington, but it is a chapter in which Beijing wrote the death certificate of the traditional and pseudo-classics in Washington about the inefficiency of Chinese intelligence, its bureaucracy, and the indiscriminate approach to its work, and it proved that Chinese intelligence, although they do not have the highly advanced technologies that match What their American counterparts have, and they do not have that long and highly experienced intelligence legacy that the Russians are proud of, for example, they will always be able to send a thousand people on any beach, no matter their location, to carry one grain of sand each and take it back to their country, and then they end up, always. they know more about the beach than everyone else.
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