Archive for the Internet Global Hegemony Category

China concerned at reports of New Zealand-U.S. plan to spy on diplomats [Xinhua]

Posted in China, Internet Global Hegemony, National Security Agency / NSA, New Zealand, NSA, US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War on April 19, 2015 by Zuo Shou / 左手

WELLINGTON, April 19 (Xinhua) — China on Sunday expressed concern about a report that New Zealand and United States spy agencies planned to hack into a data link between Chinese government buildings in Auckland.

The plan was revealed in documents from U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden, the Herald on Sunday newspaper reported.

The project run by New Zealand’s Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) and the NSA appeared aimed [sic] at tapping data flowing between the Chinese Consulate and its visa office in Auckland.

The documents said the GCSB had identified the data link, and agreed to cooperate with the NSA to use the link to access China’s computer systems, said the report.

Documents appeared to show the plan was codenamed “Frostbite” by the GCSB and “Basilhayden” — also identified as fictional spy James Bond’s drink of choice — by the NSA.

The paperwork revealed the GCSB worked with the NSA’s elite hacker team — the Tailored Access Operations division — which specialized in cracking computer systems and planting spyware on computers, said the report.

A 2013 NSA document showed China at the top of a list of targets it was having monitored by the GCSB, saying the New Zealand agency gave the NSA “access to areas and countries that are difficult for the United States to access.”

But it is unknown if the plan went ahead because, as sign-off was being sought, Snowden walked out of his job with a mass of top secret documents.

The Chinese Embassy in New Zealand issued a statement Sunday, saying that China was concerned about the report and attached great importance to the cyber security issue.

“We will firmly safeguard our security interests and continue to guarantee our cyber and information security with concrete measures,” said the statement…

…Xinhua was unable to contact anyone in New Zealand Prime Minister John Key’s office for a response on Sunday…

…The opposition Green Party said Key and the government pointlessly endangered New Zealand’s relationship with its largest trading partner.

“Breaking international agreements to spy on Chinese diplomatic communications in Auckland is reckless. It would bring very little, if any, benefit to New Zealand,” Greens co-leader Russel Norman said in a statement.

“The test is, would we have spied on China on our own accord? It’s very unlikely. So why is New Zealand spying on behalf of the Americans?”

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Excerpted/edited by Zuo Shou

Full article link: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2015-04/19/c_134163487.htm
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Related article, contains unsubstantiated allegations of massive Chinese state-sponsored cyber-espionage: “New Zealand Plotted Hack on China With NSA” [The Intercept] – https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2015/04/18/new-zealand-china-gcsb-nsa-auckland-hack/

Obama declares “national emergency” based on alleged cyber threats from Russia, China [World Socialist Website]

Posted in Anti-China propaganda exposure, Black propaganda, Capitalism crisis early 21st century, China, China-bashing, DPR Korea, FBI, Internet Global Hegemony, Iran, Pentagon, Psychological warfare, Russia, US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War on April 12, 2015 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Thomas Gaist
3 April 2015

In yet another escalation of the drive by the US ruling class to establish unconstrained control over the world’s information networks, US President Barack Obama issued an executive order Wednesday declaring a “national emergency” over cyber attacks on US targets. The order authorizes economic sanctions and the seizure of financial assets and other forms of property from any entity considered a “security risk…”

Excerpted; full article link: http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2015/04/03/cybe-a03.html

Spotlight: Snowden files unveil U.S. attempt to control Internet [Xinhua]

Posted in Australia, Canada, Germany, Internet Global Hegemony, Iran, National Security Agency / NSA, New Zealand, U.K., US imperialism, USA on January 27, 2015 by Zuo Shou / 左手

BEIJING, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) — The world-shocking global surveillance by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) is just the beginning of the spook organization’s sprawling efforts to control the Internet, show new revelations attributed to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

The NSA is “planning for wars of the future in which the Internet will play a critical role” and seeking the ability to destroy enemy infrastructure remotely, German magazine Der Spiegel revealed in a recent report, citing “top-secret documents” from Snowden’s archive it has seen exclusively.

POLITERAIN, NOT SO POLITE

The Spiegel disclosure highlighted an NSA project code-named “Politerain,” which is operated by digital snipers with Tailored Access Operations, the department responsible for breaking into computers.

In its job posting, the program says it is “looking for interns who want to break things.”

On the basis of hacking into third-party computers, interns are also told to formulate plans to “remotely degrade or destroy opponent computers, routers, servers and network-enabled devices by attacking the hardware.”

Politerain spies, according to the leaked documents, have various programs for specific purposes. For example, Passionatepolka can be used to “remotely brick network cards,” Berserkr to implant “persistent backdoors” and “parasitic drivers,” and Barnfire to “erase the BIOS on a brand of servers that act as a backbone to many rival governments.”

Ultimately, the goal of the internship program was “developing an attacker’s mindset,” noted the German magazine.

SPYING IS JUST “PHASE 0”

Internal NSA documents, Der Spiegel said, indicate that surveillance of the Internet is merely “Phase 0” in the U.S. digital war strategy.

The aim of the surveillance is to detect vulnerabilities in enemy systems, which is “the prerequisite for everything that follows,” the German magazine added, citing the files.

Once “stealthy implants” have been placed to infiltrate enemy systems, thus allowing “permanent accesses,” then Phase 3 has been achieved — a phase headed by the word “dominate” in the documents.

At that stage, according to the report, NSA spooks can control and destroy “at will through pre-positioned accesses” critical systems and networks, which include anything important in keeping a society running: energy, communications and transportation.

“The internal documents state that the ultimate goal is ‘real-time controlled escalation,'” said the Spiegel report.

D WEAPONS

Atomic, biological and chemical weapons are widely referred to as the ABC weapons. Now the list has been extended to D — digital weapons.

“The next major conflict will start in cyberspace,” Der Spiegel quoted one NSA presentation as saying. To that end, the U.S. government is currently undertaking a massive effort to digitally arm itself for network warfare.

“For the 2013 secret intelligence budget, the NSA projected it would need around 1 billion dollars in order to increase the strength of its computer network attack operations. The budget included an increase of some 32 million dollars for ‘unconventional solutions’ alone,” revealed the report.

The NSA aims “to use the Net to paralyze computer networks and, by doing so, potentially all the infrastructure they control, including power and water supplies, factories, airports or the flow of money,” according to the Spiegel disclosure.

Among the D weapons is malware, and several programs of that sort have emerged in recent years that a number of indicators show are attributable to the NSA and its Five Eyes alliance, which also includes Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

The Spiegel report referred to Stuxnet, which was used to attack the Iranian nuclear program, and Regin, “a powerful spyware trojan that created a furor in Germany after it infected the USB stick of a high-ranking staffer to Chancellor Angela Merkel.” The latter was also used in attacks against the European Commission.

PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY

In what is called a guerilla war over data, the Snowden files show, little differentiation is made between soldiers and civilians, and any Internet user could suffer damage to his or her data or computer.

The potential damage D weapons can inflict goes well beyond the online world. For example, if U.S. spies use Barnfire to destroy or “brick” the control center of a hospital, “people who do not even own a mobile phone could be affected,” Der Spiegel noted.

While launching cyber-attacks, intelligence agencies like the NSA have adopted “plausible deniability” as their guiding principle, seeking to make it impossible to trace the sources of the attackers, the German magazine added.

“It’s a stunning approach with which the digital spies deliberately undermine the very foundations of the rule of law around the globe,” commented the magazine.

“This approach threatens to transform the Internet into a lawless zone in which superpowers and their secret services operate according to their own whims with very few ways to hold them accountable for their actions,” it added.

Article link: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/indepth/2015-01/19/c_133929625.htm

The Digital Arms Race: NSA Preps America for Future Battle [Spiegel Online International]

Posted in China, Internet Global Hegemony, National Security Agency / NSA, NSA, PLA, US Government Cover-up, US imperialism, USA on January 19, 2015 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Jacob Appelbaum, Aaron Gibson, Claudio Guarnieri, Andy Müller-Maguhn, Laura Poitras, Marcel Rosenbach, Leif Ryge, Hilmar Schmundt and Michael Sontheimer

January 27, 2015

The NSA’s mass surveillance is just the beginning. Documents from Edward Snowden show that the intelligence agency is arming America for future digital wars — a struggle for control of the Internet that is already well underway…

[Article includes claims of NSA encounters with Chinese PLA-based cyber-espionage]

Full article link: http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/new-snowden-docs-indicate-scope-of-nsa-preparations-for-cyber-battle-a-1013409.html

China Voice: Spy charges expose U.S. cyber hegemony mentality [Xinhua]

Posted in Anti-China propaganda exposure, Black propaganda, Brazil, China, China-bashing, China-US relations, Internet Global Hegemony, Iran, National Security Agency / NSA, NSA, Obama, Pensacola, Pentagon, US Government Cover-up, US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War on May 22, 2014 by Zuo Shou / 左手

BEIJING, May 21 (Xinhua) — The United States has indulged in its cyber hegemony mentality again as it filed ungrounded commercial cyber espionage charges against five Chinese military officers.

It is really amazing to see that the biggest cyber bully, which has virtually no credibility left in the cyber world, could still stand at the moral high ground to accuse others.

The U.S. has repeatedly and arbitrarily made baseless accusations about China’s cyber espionage in recent years, reflecting its hypocrisy and hegemony.

U.S. cyber hegemony is aggressive and dangerous in nature.

Even as overall U.S. defense spending witnessed cuts, the Pentagon is still beefing up its cyberspace force at the U.S. Cyber Command, doubling its budget to 447 million U.S. dollars this year, the Washington Post reported earlier this year.

The cyberspace force is also expected to be expanded from about 1,800 people today to more than 6,000 by the end of 2016, according to the plan.

The U.S. president has the power to order preemptive cyber strikes, the New York Times reported last year. And The Times reported that Obama ordered an escalating series of cyber attacks against Iran’s nuclear enrichment facilities.

While the U.S. has touted threats to cyber security from abroad, the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has been one of the most active attackers of computer systems around the world.

China is in fact a major victim of persistent and large-scale cyber attacks from the U.S. targeting China’s government institutions, schools, universities, companies and even individuals.

China has always requested that the U.S. give a clear and thorough clarification on why it targeted Chinese institutions and people, but the country has still not received it.

The unfounded charge against Chinese officers amounts to the same hypocrisy as a bandit calling for justice.

The Europeans were alerted to risks by a European Parliament report more than a decade ago that the U.S. uses sophisticated electronic spying techniques to gather economic intelligence.

The report put forward extensive claims that the U.S. NSA routinely tracks telephone, fax, and email transmissions from around the world and passes on useful corporate intelligence to American companies.

Among the allegations, the NSA fed information to Boeing and McDonnell Douglas, now part of Boeing, enabling the companies to beat out European Airbus for a multi-billion dollar contract.

U.S. intelligence, by virtue of data provided by nine Internet companies, including Microsoft, Google, Apple, Facebook, and Yahoo, and other major telecom providers, tracked citizens’ private contacts and social activities recklessly, according to the Washington Post.

Allegations of rampant U.S. electronic espionage have unfolded on a global scale in the wake of damaging revelations by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

After it was exposed that Brazil’s state oil giant Petrobras was also targeted by U.S. surveillance, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff said the U.S. spying was out of economic and strategic interests instead of concerns about terrorism as Washington had claimed.

Instead of offering a sincere “sorry,” Washington has found that mudslinging at other countries is a way to remedy its image, which has been tarred by its global spy program.

Unless the U.S. casts away the cyber hegemony mentality of turning the Internet into a tool to monitor the whole world and consolidate its own status, it will be impossible to build a just international order or avoid high-risk behavior online.

Article link: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-05/21/c_133351011.htm

China Voice: Big Brother USA’s spy charges are absurd [Xinhua]

Posted in Anti-China propaganda exposure, Black propaganda, China, China-bashing, China-US relations, CIA, Internet Global Hegemony, National Security Agency / NSA, NSA, PLA, US Government Cover-up, US imperialism, USA on May 22, 2014 by Zuo Shou / 左手

BEIJING, May 20 (Xinhua) — As the most notorious surveillance country, the U.S. indictment of Chinese military officers seems almost insolent in a world still reeling at the scope of the U.S. spy network.

The Chinese military has never engaged in cyber theft of trade secrets, nonetheless, Washington has charged five members of the People’s Liberation Army with hacking U.S. companies.

Everyone knows that the U.S. itself is the biggest cyber bully, conducting sweeping surveillance around the world. Documents leaked by former Central Intelligence Agency contractor Edward Snowden detailed the National Security Agency’s (NSA) surveillance activities around the globe, from foreign leaders to ordinary citizens.

Intelligence from Snowden showed that about 70 million French phone calls were collected by the NSA from December 2012 to January 2013. More than 120 world leaders have been under U.S. surveillance since 2009.

China is one of Big Brother’s victims. The U.S. routinely attacks, infiltrates and taps Chinese networks belonging to governments, institutions, enterprises, universities and major telecom backbone networks.

Latest data from the National Computer Network Emergency Response Technical Team Coordination Center of China showed that 135 host computers in the U.S. carried 563 phishing pages targeting Chinese websites that led to 14,000 phishing operations from March 19 to May 18.

The center found 2,016 IP addresses in the U.S. had implanted backdoors in 1,754 Chinese websites, involving 57,000 backdoor attacks in the same period.

The indictment is based on fabricated facts, grossly violates the basic norms governing international relations and has harmed China-U.S. ties.

In 2013 China sought talks with the U.S. on policing cyber space through a bilateral working group, despite the shadow cast over relations by Snowden’s disclosures of U.S. electronic surveillance in China.

The U.S. intentionally jeopardized the trust between the world’s two biggest economies and China on Monday announced the suspension of the China-U.S. Cyber Working Group which was scheduled to met in July in Beijing.

The U.S. should clean its own house before pointing fingers at others.

Article link: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-05/20/c_126525854.htm

“US pushes cyber-war confrontation with China” – Justice Department’s absurd indictment of PLA officers [World Socialist Website]

Posted in Anti-China media bias, Anti-China propaganda exposure, Black propaganda, Capitalist media double standard, China, China-bashing, China-US relations, Corporate Media Critique, Internet Global Hegemony, Media smear campaign, National Security Agency / NSA, NSA, Obama, Pentagon, PLA, Psychological warfare, US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War on May 20, 2014 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Patrick Martin
20 May 2014

A federal grand jury has indicted five officers of the Chinese Peoples Liberation Army on computer hacking, economic espionage and other charges, officials of the US Department of Justice announced at a press conference Monday morning.

The indictment is unprecedented under international law, as it aims to criminalize actions allegedly carried out not by individual hackers, or “rogue” elements, but by serving officers in the armed forces of a major country. It is calculated to provoke a confrontation between the US and Chinese governments.

“These represent the first ever charges against known state actors for infiltrating US commercial targets by cyber means,” Attorney General Eric Holder said at the press briefing, emphasizing that the Obama administration was undertaking a major escalation in its anti-China policy. “The range of trade secrets and other sensitive business information stolen in this case is significant and demands an aggressive response.”

The five men, named as Wang Dong, Sun Kailiang, Wen Xinyu, Huang Zhenyu, and Gu Chunhui, are said to be officers in Unit 61398 of the Third Department of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, based in Shanghai. Each faces 31 counts of computer and economic crimes. While none is in US custody, the charges would carry lengthy prison sentences.

The alleged targets of the hacking include Westinghouse Electric Co., United States Steel, Alcoa Inc., Allegheny Technologies Inc. (ATI), U.S. subsidiaries of SolarWorld AG, and the United Steel Workers union, which represents some workers at those companies.

Westinghouse is the major US builder of nuclear power plants, and built four such facilities in China in 2010-2011. The other companies entered into production agreements with Chinese companies during that time, or were engaged in trade litigation, as was the USW. The Chinese officers supposedly used cyber-warfare techniques to gain access to internal e-mails and other confidential materials at all six organizations.

The indictment is an act of monumental cynicism. The revelations of former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, which began almost exactly one year ago, have demonstrated that the US government is by far the world’s largest “hacker,” with tens of thousands of employees and tens of billions in resources devoted to invading computer systems all over the world and stealing e-mails, text messages, communications metadata, address books and every other form of electronic data.

The US government collects the content of the voice, text and e-mail communications of nearly everyone on the planet. It has engineered back-door entry into the business activities of Internet service providers and e-mail providers like Google, Microsoft and Yahoo to bypass their security and encryption and conduct illegal surveillance of their customers. It has broken into corporate servers, either electronically or physically, to install monitoring devices.

The NSA particularly targets for surveillance strategic companies like Huawei, the Chinese manufacturer of servers and routers, aiming to use Huawei machines as a vehicle for spying on the company’s customers, corporations and governments throughout Asia, Africa, Latin America and Europe.

The US television networks gave enormous play to the indictments in their Monday evening broadcasts, without a hint of the grotesque contradictions in the US government action. One can only imagine the reaction in Washington, and in the American media, if China were to indict NSA director Keith Alexander, who recently retired, or his successor Admiral Michael Rogers, on charges of espionage, hacking and information theft…

Excerpted; full article link: https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2014/05/20/usch-m20.html
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Related Xinhua articles:

China strongly opposes U.S. indictment against Chinese military personnel – http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-05/20/c_133347615.htm

China publishes latest data of U.S. cyber attack – http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-05/20/c_126520552.htm

China suspends cyber working group activities with U.S. to protest cyber theft indictment – http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-05/20/c_126520553.htm