Thursday, January 14, 2010

China Cyberattacks: It's Not Even New

A correspondent sends me a Register story showing that the UK's FBI-analog (MI5) had openly identified the Chinese government as the source of cyberattacks on British firms over two years ago. While it's not surprising that the Chinese government has been behaving this way for a while, it is surprising that the U.S. is so far behind our European allies in openly identifying their actions. I guess America's massive intelligence community has the excuse that it's been so successful in following the TSA model to identify Muslim terrorists that it hasn't had time to defend against the Chinese Communist Party.

My hopes are that the Google withdrawal from China (that's what it is already, in all but name) will set a new tone. It will show other companies and their shareholders that in fact you can withdraw from China and survive - if you're a foreign firm, your fate in China is predetermined anyway. In fact your withdrawal may well be in in the combined interest of democracy and your own business interests. Even Hugo Chavez isn't constantly spying on and sabotaging developed-world firms that operate in his territory.

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