US physically hacks 100,000 foreign computers

NSA spies have inserted circuitry into computers in China, Russia, EU, India, Saudi and Pakistan to gain intelligence. 

from The United States has implanted devices in nearly 100,000 computers
to spy on institutions such as the Chinese and Russian military, EU
trade groups and agencies within Saudi Arabia, India and Pakistan.

The New York Times on Tuesday cited documents from the
National Security Agency, computer experts and US officials stating that
the NSA uses radio wave technology to gain access to otherwise
encrypted computers or machines that are not connected to the internet.

The Times reported that the agency has been inserting tiny
circuit boards into computers for several years. The technology allows
non-internet connected computers to be hacked, and bypasses encryption
and anti-spyware systems that otherwise prevent hacking over the world
wide web.

The NSA calls the effort an “active defence”‘ and has used the
technology to monitor units of the Chinese and Russian armies, drug
cartels, trade institutions inside the European Union, and US allies
including Saudi Arabia, India and Pakistan, the Times reported.

Among the most frequent targets has been the Chinese army, the Times reported.

The United States has accused the Chinese Army of launching regular
attacks on American industrial and military targets, often to steal
secrets or intellectual property.

US officials have protested when Chinese attackers have placed
similar software on computer systems of US companies or government

The NSA said the technology has not been used in computers in the US. 

“NSA’s activities are focused and specifically deployed against –
and only against – valid foreign intelligence targets in response to
intelligence requirements,” Vanee Vines, an agency spokeswoman, said in
a statement to the Times. 

“We do not use foreign intelligence capabilities to steal the trade
secrets of foreign companies on behalf of – or give intelligence
we collect to – US companies to enhance their international
competitiveness or increase their bottom line.”

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