China "Largest Threat To US National Security", Declares FBI And Counterintelligence Heads

By: John Honovich, Published on Sep 07, 2018

China is 'bar none', the 'largest threat to [US] national security' plus China has declared 'economic war' on the US, according to William Evanina, the head of Counterintelligence (CI) for the U.S. Government.

Evanina's remarks were made in an interview with the former acting director of the CIA (listen to the interview here and read the transcript here).

Key remarks include:

China is number one. So, existentially, long term, they're the largest threat to our national security, bar none; so, it's not even close. They-- however, and we'll juxtapose them with Russia in a second, their-- their processes are more economic-based to be-- the number one economic power in the world-- to not have a global equal like us, but to overtake us.

And they look at that from semiconductors, supercomputing, quantum technology that the persistent theft of our intellectual property and trade secrets, which is critical, the human-enabled cyber capabilities they have from insider threats-- we just-- the F.B.I. just made an arrest two weeks ago for General Electric.

So, that continues, and it's a persistent 1,000 grains of sand. They have a lot of resources they could throw at us, and they hit our academia, our industry, our research development, and obviously our government. The F.B.I. has arrested double-digit individuals in the last year or so all for spying on behalf of China.

With respect to the prioritization and right now China is number one; it's not close. They have strategic plan to overtake us economically. I believe we're in an economic war with them-- they have declared that war. [emphasis added]

This comes as the US government has banned purchasing network video surveillance (Dahua and Hikvision) and telecommunications (Huawei, ZTE) for government use, government funds and possibly more, depending on how the law is implemented.

Update: FBI Head Same Take

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US FBI Director Christopher Wray has the same take, expressed in July 2018, with the video embedded below shows:

Lesson - US: China Is The Enemy

The lesson to industry is clear. The US intelligence community considers the People's Republic of China / China Communist Party to be an enemy of the US. Even if you disagree, you need to understand this is the reality.

Too many people in tech create conspiracy theories that American companies - Motorola, Avigilon, Vicon, etc. - are somehow driving this to win business. The reality is - the US intelligence community - who does not care about lobbyists nor corporations - sees China as the top threat.

About Trust, Not Bugs

Given this, fixing bugs or patching backdoors once they are found is not enough. China is not trusted by the US intelligence community so 'source code transparency centers' may be cute marketing for dealers but will not convince the government. The trust issue is about the Chinese PRC government and its authoritarian control over its people and companies.

Impact - Negative Pressure Rising Against Chinese Technology

For dealers or end users, the reality is negative pressure will continue to rise against the sale and use of Chinese technology, driven by the US Intelligence community. Complain what you will about losing cheap products but that is a very serious and strong factor against partnering and using those products.

Share your views or objections in the comments.

3 reports cite this report:

China Is Not A Security Megatrend, Says SIA on Oct 19, 2018
The US Security Industry Association has released its 10 "Security...
China Hacks Video Servers Causing Uproar on Oct 05, 2018
An incident causing an international uproar is hitting home in the video...
Chinese Government Praises Hikvision For Following Xi Jinping on Sep 17, 2018
The Chinese government council responsible for managing China's state-owned...
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