Saturday, July 15, 2017

China’s Intelligence Networks in United States Include 25,000 Spies

Beijing's spy networks in the United States include up to 25,000 Chinese intelligence officers and more than 15,000 recruited agents who have stepped up offensive spying activities since 2012, according to a Chinese dissident with close ties to Beijing's military and intelligence establishment. This, in a piece where Bill Gertz, a long time Washington Times reporter and now writing for the Washington Free Beacon, interviews a Chinese dissident who reveals up to 18,000 Americans recruited as Chinese agents.

Without questioning Guo's motivations, the priority list that's played out in the last few years —in action, appears to be directly inline with what Guo talks about in his statements, and the aggressive positioning undertaken in their recent reorganization. We can't speak to the human rights abused claimed in the piece, for example "Chinese intelligence officers sent to the United States are controlled by the MSS by keeping all their family members and relatives hostage"  but according to Guo:

  • China's intelligence targets included several strategic areas of the United States.
  • "The first is to obtain military weapons-related technology. This is priority No. 1," Guo said.
  • Second, Chinese intelligence is engaged in "buying" senior U.S. officials personally, 
  • and a third objective is buying family members of American political or business elites "with a view to getting intelligence and to make big business deals in China's favor," he said.
  • A fourth priority is penetrating the American internet system and critical infrastructure by implanting malicious software.
  • "And they have successfully penetrated all the major defense weapons suppliers of the U.S. government," Guo said, adding that "the scale of their operations is mind boggling."
Guo said Ma, the MSS vice minister, told him that a major shift by the Chinese was expanding the scope of agent recruitment from Asians to mainstream ethnic groups.
"This is where the biggest danger lies," he said. "It's clear the situation is getting more and more dangerous now. The United States has the best weapons in its arsenal, such as laser weapons, etc. Yet, the Chinese spy system has penetrated into the bloodstream of American defense establishment with their viruses and everything else."
"The United States is bleeding and is unaware that sooner or later the United States will run out of blood," Guo said.
Also, the United States is overly reliant on technical spying while China has an asymmetrical advantage in using its tens of thousands of human spies.

On June 26th, Wapack Labs published a top down report on the Chinese reorganization of their new cyber structure. The report summarizes Wapack Labs research conducted on the PLA Third Department, suspected of being the primary military cyber force for China.  The research was conducted entirely on open sources available on the Chinese Internet, plus unclassified satellite imagery.  The report is unclassified but sensitive in that it reveals more about Chinese cyber-related military facilities than has been published in the past.  This is a compilation of recent Wapack Labs reporting separately on each of these Third Department entities.  If you'd like a copy of the report, register, and we'll send you one.