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US unrestrained in carrying out global cyber attacks

By Yi Li | People's Daily Online | Updated: 2020-11-18 08:59
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US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Aug. 5 the launch of five new lines of effort under the so-called "Clean Network" program, and singled out seven Chinese tech companies, in a bid to ban more applications from China and further restrict Chinese companies' access to US cloud systems.

Without any solid evidence, the US has launched a global campaign against a private Chinese company, said Wang Yi, China's State Councilor and Foreign Minister, adding that this is a textbook example of bullying.

"Talking CLEAN while doing DIRTY. How ironic!" Hua Chunying, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, also tweeted on Aug. 6 when commenting on the matter.

In fact, the US is not qualified to build a "clean national alliance", because the country itself is already covered in stains. Its bad record in eavesdropping and monitoring other countries around the world is already well known.

In 2013, the Guardian and the Washington Post reported that the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) launched a secret surveillance program codenamed "Prism" in 2007, directly accessing the central servers of US Internet companies to mine data and collect intelligence. Nine international Internet giants, including Microsoft, Yahoo, Google and Apple, were involved.

This disclosure caused an international public outcry, and the NSA was instantly mired in a scandal. In response, US officials "confidently" argued that stopping terrorism overrides the right to privacy.

Russia's Kaspersky Lab revealed in 2015 that it had found a cyber hacker organization that had been active for about 20 years, with more attack capabilities and doing more harm than any previously known hacker group. Kaspersky Lab named the organization "Equation Group ".

Kaspersky Lab did not say who was behind the organization, but hinted that its methods may be related to the NSA's espionage activities.

After whistleblower Edward Snowden’s revelations led to "Prism Gate", the US came under pressure to pass the American Freedom Act in 2015, established the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA court), and took stricter oversight of NSA surveillance, but still failed to stop the aforementioned problems. Secret hacking scandals in the US have once again exposed its "persistence and fanaticism" in eavesdropping.

In 2017, there were more than 75,000 computer virus attacks in 99 countries and regions around the world, caused by a ransomware worm called "WannaCry". The medical systems of dozens of British hospitals were paralyzed and forced to suspend emergency services; thousands of computers in the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs were attacked; Germany's rail system and the US firm FedEx also fell victim to the global cyber attack.

The industry consensus was that "WannaCry" came from the NSA's virus arsenal. Many cyber security experts accuse the US of spending heavily on hacker attack tools rather than self-defense mechanisms, resulting in a "more insecure" global network environment.

The US has long carried out illegal eavesdropping on other countries, including its allies. In February this year, the Washington Post and other media released a joint investigation report, revealing that from 1970 onwards, intelligence agencies in the US and West Germany secretly owned a controlling stake in a Swiss encryption equipment supplier, in order to steal information from more than 120 countries and regions around the world, including US allies.

This incident once again confirms the fact that the US conducts indiscriminate surveillance around the world and steals information from other countries through "back doors.”

Ironically, some politicians in the US have spared no effort to slander China on the issue of cyber security. They have not only turned a blind eye to their own misdeeds, but also frequently performed the trick of being a thief that cries 'Stop thief!’.

This has exposed the hypocrisy and double standards of the US on the issue of cyber security. As Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said, the so-called “Clean Network” of the US is in fact a dirty network of eavesdropping, monopoly and ideology.

"I can't in good conscience allow the US government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they're secretly building," Snowden said when asked why "Prism Gate" had to be disclosed. But today's US does not seem to have a conscience, and only seems to be getting worse.

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