The FBI accused three Chinese citizens, including Su Bin (Stephen Su), owner of Lode-Technology, last month of hacking into US military projects. Defense analyst Wendell Minnick had a look at the FBI-document detailing the accusations for Defense News.
Details of other aircraft and US companies are sketchy. Su is alleged to have obtained F-35 test plans and “blueprints” that would “allow us [China] to catch up rapidly with US levels … [and] stand easily on the giant’s shoulders,” according to Su’s emails.
A former US government counterintelligence analyst on China said the case is a “close parallel” to other cases involving Chinese businessmen “taking government information to ensure long-term success of [their] business.” He also said that Canada and Hong Kong were still popular technical transfer shipment points for Chinese industrial and military espionage.
According to the complaint, one of Su’s emails states that his team “secured the authority to control the website of the … missile developed jointly by India and Russia and that they would ‘await the opportunity to conduct internal penetration.’ ”
Su also allegedly focused on military technology in Taiwan and files held by various Chinese “democracy” groups and the “Tibetan Independence Movement.” On Taiwan, the intelligence collected was focused on military maneuvers, military construction, warfare operation plans, strategic targets and espionage activities. According to one of the several emails, “we still have control on American companies like [identifying US companies] and etc. and the focus is mainly on those American enterprises which belong to the top 50 arms companies in the world.”
One attachment listed 32 US military projects and another listed 80 engineers and program personnel working on a “military development project.” Another lists the names and email addresses for four people at a “European company that develops military navigation, guidance and control systems.”
Cyber intrusions into Boeing and other companies were sophisticated. According to one of Su’s emails, they had control of an unidentified defense company’s file transfer protocol server. Jump servers, also known as “hop points,” were set up in France, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and the US. According to emails, these were set up to avoid “diplomatic and legal” difficulties for China.
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