U.S. to China: We Hacked Your Internet Gear We Told You Not to Hack | Wired.com
By Cade Metz
The headline news is that the NSA has surreptitiously “burrowed its way into nearly all the security architecture” sold by the world’s largest computer networking companies, including everyone from U.S. mainstays Cisco and Juniper to Chinese giant Huawei. But beneath this bombshell of a story from Der Spiegel, you’ll find a rather healthy bit of irony.
After all, the United States government has spent years complaining that Chinese intelligence operations could find ways of poking holes in Huawei networking gear, urging both American businesses and foreign allies to sidestep the company’s hardware. The complaints grew so loud that, at one point, Huawei indicated it may abandon the U.S. networking market all together. And, yet, Der Speigel now tells us that U.S. intelligence operations have been poking holes in Huawei networking gear — not to mention hardware sold by countless other vendors in both the States and abroad.
… “Do I see the irony? Certainly the Chinese will,” Segal says, noting that the Chinese government and the Chinese press have complained of U.S hypocrisy ever since former government contractor Edward Snowden first started to reveal NSA surveillance practices last summer. “The Chinese government has been hammering home what they call the U.S.’s ulterior motives for criticizing China, and there’s been a steady drumbeat of stories in the Chinese press about backdoors in the products of U.S. companies. They’ve been going after Cisco in particular.”
… But here in the United States, we now know, the NSA may blur other lines in the name of national security. Segal says that although he, as an American, believes the U.S. government is on stronger ethical ground than the Chinese, other nations are beginning to question its motives.