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Tag: espionage

Engineer Charged with Nuclear Espionage Claims FBI Tricked Him into an Interview

Szuhsiung “Allen” Ho

Szuhsiung “Allen” Ho

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI says Szuhsiung “Allen” Ho is the first person in the U.S. to be charged with nuclear espionage involving China.

But the engineer’s attorney claims the FBI tricked him into an interview that may incriminate him, the Knoxville News Sentinel reports. 

Ho was arrested in April at a hotel in Atlanta and changed with procuring American nuclear information for the Chinese government.

Ho, whose firm is Energy Technology International, was working to provide information in an alleged plot with Chinese General Nuclear Power.

“Ho repeatedly attempted to justify his situation, at which point agents reminded Ho he had preferred to speak with a lawyer and prohibited Ho from making incriminating statements,” an FBI report stated.

Fear of Espionage Prompted FBI to Investigate Clinton’s Use of Emails

Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private e-mail server while she as secretary of state was prompted by fears of espionage.

Vice News obtained two secret letters the FBI sent to the State Department that revealed why an investigation was launched.

The Intelligence Community’s Inspector General feared that Clinton’s e-mails may have been “compromised” and shared with a “foreign power or an agent of a foreign power.”

A Section 811 referral “arises whenever there is a compromise of classified information — for whatever reason,” said Steven Aftergood, director of the Project on Government Secrecy at the Federation of American Scientists. “It could include espionage, but it could also include negligence, inadvertence, or something else…. Section 811 does not assert a violation of criminal law.”
FBI Director James Comey said last month that the bureau uncovered no “direct evidence” that Clinton’s server “was successfully hacked.”

FBI Warns Universities to Protect Research from Espionage

Genetic research at the laboratoryBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Universities are the hub of innovative research, and the FBI warns, a target for foreign spies.

The Houston Chronicle reports that the FBI has notified universities to be on the look out espionage.

“Some of the greatest threats to academia in the Houston area are the insider threat, theft of trade secrets and economic espionage,” said Maryjo Thomas, assistant special agent in charge of the FBI’s Houston Division

Thomas delivered the warning to more than 100 academic and technology leaders at the FBI’s Houston headquarters.

“It is an initiative whose time has certainly come,” said Mauro Ferrari, president and CEO of the Houston Methodist Research Institute. “Many people in the world would like to have free access to things developed in the United States.”

China Aggressively Stealing Corporate Secrets, FBI Says

map china

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

China is on the loose.

The Daily Beast writes that American companies are getting their secrets stolen like never before, according to the FBI,  and China is to blame for almost all of it.

The website reports that the FBI reports a surge in cases of economic espionage in the past year.

China’s intelligence services are “as aggressive now as they’ve ever been,” said Assistant Director Randall Coleman, who runs the bureau’s counterintelligence division, the Daily Beast reports.

To read the full story click here. 

 

FBI Investigates St. Louis Cardinals for Allegedly Hacking into Astros’ Network

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The St. Louis Cardinals are under investigation by the FBI for allegedly hacking the computer network of the Houston Astros to steal player information, The Washington Post reports.

A federal law enforcement official said the investigation is “ongoing” and that there is “a lot of working going into” it.

It would be the first corporate espionage case involving a sports team accused of hacking the network of another team.

Federal officials said a person commits a crime when he or she intrudes on another person’s computer without authorization or permission.

Investigators said they have uncovered evidence that shows Cardinals officials hacked the Astros’ database and accessed information on scouting and potential trades.

Major League Baseball said it “has fully cooperated.”

“Once the investigative process has been completed by federal law enforcement officials, we will evaluate the next steps and will make decisions promptly,” the official said.

Homeland Security Chairman: Espionage Motivates China to Hack U.S.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Evidence n0t only points to China as the culprit behind “the most significant breach in U.S. History,” but the hackers may have been sponsored by the Chinese government, The Hill reports. 

House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul, R-Texas, said all indications are that hackers were motivated espionage because of the target, the Office of Personnel Management.

It’s not only looking very likely that someone located in China hacked the U.S.

“It was perhaps nation-state sponsored because of the way it was done,” he said. “It was done for espionage.”

“This is an area where there are no rules to the game,” McCaul added. “It raises all sorts of issues for Americans.”

Other Stories of Interest


FBI: China-Based Hackers Stole Information on 4 Million Federal Workers

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

U.S. investigators believe China-based hackers stole identifying information of at least 4 million federal workers across virtually every agency, leading to concerns that culprits could mimic American officials, the Boston Herald reports. 

The compromised data came from the Office of Personnel Management and the Interior Department.

“The FBI is conducting an investigation to identify how and why this occurred,” the statement said.

U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, called the breach “yet another indication of a foreign power probing successfully and focusing on what appears to be data that would identify people with security clearances.”

The skills of the hackers impressed experts.

“They were incredibly successful,” Anthony Roman, president of Roman & Associates, a global investigative and security consulting firm, said. “Certain types of malware are like little sleeper cells. It goes in there, it may stay dormant, then it collects a little information and it may go dormant again. It can be very difficult to detect as a result.”

David Laufman To Oversee Justice Department’s Increased Counterespionage Efforts

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

David Laufman, an experienced former federal prosecutor, will take over the Justice Department’s counterespionage efforts as part of a larger restructuring to put more of a focus on cyber attacks, Reuters reports.

Laufman is expected to begin his job today as chief of the counterespionage section of the Justice Department’s national security division.

Laufman is returning to government work after joining the private sector. He’s worked as a CIA analyst, a congressional insider and in the early 2000s a senior Justice Department official under George W. Bush.

The Justice Department is trying to get a handle on growing cyber threats and violations of export control laws, Reuters wrote.