Chinese corporate espionage, going strategic?

Discussion in 'Economics' started by Alsacien, Mar 19, 2012.

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  1. Alsacien

    Alsacien LE Moderator

    Inside the Chinese Boom in Corporate Espionage - Businessweek

    "In November, 14 U.S. intelligence agencies issued a report describing a far-reaching industrial espionage campaign by Chinese spy agencies. This campaign has been in the works for years and targets a swath of industries: biotechnology, telecommunications, and nanotechnology, as well as clean energy. One U.S. metallurgical company lost technology to China’s hackers that cost $1 billion and 20 years to develop, U.S. officials said last year. An Apple (AAPL) global supply manager pled guilty in 2011 to funneling designs and pricing information to China and other countries; a Ford Motor (F) engineer was sentenced to six years in prison in 2010 for trying to smuggle 4,000 documents, including design specs, to China. Earlier this month, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration told Congress that China-based hackers had gained access to sensitive files stored on computers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
    As the toll adds up, political leaders and intelligence officials in the U.S. and Europe are coming to a disturbing conclusion. “It’s the greatest transfer of wealth in history,” General Keith Alexander, director of the National Security Agency, said at a security conference at New York’s Fordham University in January."

    The question for me is; how deeply are the government intelligence and other agencies involved?
     
  2. Up to their necks and then some I reckon. But if US agencies think this is new then they are hugely, utterly incompetent. I remember getting told in no uncertain terms at a former employer that dealing with the Chinese could be problematical as anything you gave them or took with you on a trip would be examined, copied and used - regardless of NDAs and so on; hence we had very clear company guidelines for dealing with them. That was 20 odd years ago.
     
  3. TheIronDuke

    TheIronDuke LE Book Reviewer

    They aren't. I read an interesting analysis recently from a US defence industry head shed who said that cost over-runs on projects like Typhoon were as much down to Chinese hackers as crap specifiers / procurement types. They nick the tech, the spec has to change. Lockheed Martin has been hit as hard as BAE it would seem. But for him there was a bigger bogey man. Any chip coming out of China with military potential could hide a poison pill. So suddenly a pilot cannot rely upon his radar, guidance systems etc.

    In answer to the OP - not much happens in China without Government sanction and if it does, and its big enough, the family of those concerned getting a bill for the bullet is a fair old disincentive so yeah, I'd say up to their necks. They'll have cut-outs in place and it'll be deniable of course.
     
  4. I worked for the (Giant) Chinese oil company SINOPEC in Iran for seven months about 3 years ago. They were supposedly running a 24 billion dollar oil field development project. Their HSE department consisted of 4 people, whose job it was to copy HSE regulations from SHELL, BP, Chevron etc and paste them into a SINOPEC HSE policy document. The

    The pipeline manager wouldn't talk to the surface construction manager and neither of those two divisions would talk to the well drilling manager.

    All software in use by the company was pirated including their operating systems and their whole IT architecture was alive with viruses and malware.
     
  5. I think you'll find that's not just a Chinese way of 'developing' policies, guidelines, procedures, and management systems.
     
  6. when will people realize we are at war ?

    I mean the PROPER war, that effects the whole country. All proper wars are economic.
     
  7. Ive just re read this and can see I sound like a PROPER cun#. Of course I dont mean to detract from those operations happening right now, especially the professionalism of the serving personel involved... but just to be sure I think the future will involve a (large) scale showdown with the new powers sometime in the not too distant.
     
  8. Don't forget Russia either....
     
  9. Aye, Russia too, though at least the Russians aren't after absolutely everything as the Chinese are, the Chinese are better at it too. Mind you Uncle Sam makes it so easy for them, sending most of their industry to China over the years. 'Designed in America Made in China' proudly stamped on the box of every Apple computer, lap top, ipad, iphone sold in the USA!
     
  10. Google Operation Shady RAT for a concise but brillaint examination of how deep this rabbit hole goes...it's phenonenal
     
  11. Well SB have been monitoring foreign Chinese students from at least 2000 to my personal knowledge.

    A funny incident happened at a very large teacher training uni in the North West of England when 50 Chinese studnets arrived.

    As one lecturer who was on the interview panel in China said: they all look the same but in China they could speak great English. Said students disappeared into the hinterland over the next two weeks. Consider that BAe has several sensitive sites, Sellafiend, not to mentioned the GSK research labs etc etc... where did they all go?
     
  12. I agree that plagiarising policy docs is endemic across the globe - but an HSEQ dept of just 4 people for a 24 billion dollar project?
     
  13. Frankly, I think they just don't understand the ways that western companies manage risk. I have experienced the opposite of your project - hundreds (literally) of people collecting all sorts of data, but not having a clue what to do with the data.
     
  14. It's an old story: everyone does it, only the losers complain.

    Spying and straight-up IP theft are part of the Chinese business landscape and while the courts are getting better at upholding copyright, the best protection is still to deal only with people you trust and for the long term.

    If it's a fat enough rabbit, someone will shoot it.

    If it's been sent from my HTC Sensation using Tapatalk then I'm probably pissed.