NSA snooped on Huawei and the Chinese Government

With each new day, a new skeleton tumbles out of the NSA closet; today we look into the news about spying on Huawei and the Chinese Government. It is common knowledge that the US government has been inquisitive about what is happening in China – so tracking former Chinese President Hu Jintao, the Chinese Trade Ministry and banks is predictable. However infiltrating the very core of a private company like Huawei is something quite unexpected.

Folks over at SPIEGEL got a chance to look at some confidential documents that are with the former NSA worker Edward Snowden. These papers reveal how NSA managed to go into the core areas of Huawei; they even got their hands on the secret source code of individual Huawei products. The reason why this is big news, is that the Software source code of products is highly protected and secretive and no lay man can have access to it. According to the documents, NSA began their infiltration in 2009 and the operation was called "Shotgiant".

Apparently, Huawei's employees' emails get routed through a central office in Shenzhen, and this where the NSA had managed to get in. The agency got a hold of a large chunk of communication sent by the workers, way back in January 2009, and these emails included those from Chairwoman Sun Yafang and CEO Ren Zhengfei. If you have been wondering why Huawei was being targeted, then get this, the tech giant is the second largest network equipment supplier in the world. This puts them right behind their Western counterparts. So far the networks supremacy belonged to Americans and other Western Companies, but with a growing market share and giving competition to Cisco, Huawei came under the the loupe.

SPIEGEL confirms that NSA managed to copy a customer list that included 1,400 names, internal documents that showed how to train engineers to use the products and other critical things. NSA internal documents justify the spying with the logic that some of the end users of Huawei's products are those who are a threat to the national security. By learning how to use the products inside out, the agency can have an upper hand against their targets.

Source : Spiegel