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article imageU.S. says China is carrying out a spy campaign on LinkedIn

By Tim Sandle     Sep 1, 2018 in Crime
The U.S. has expressed concerns that Chinese spy agencies are generating fake LinkedIn accounts and are using these to attempt to recruit people with access to the U.S. government to gain commercial secrets.
The claim comes from William Evanina, who is the U.S. counter-intelligence chief. The U.S. chief spy-catcher has told Reuters that U.S. officials have informed Microsoft's LinkedIn about concerns over China’s “super aggressive” efforts across the professional networking site.
In his interview, Evanina goes on to state that the Chinese espionage campaign is based on contacting thousands of LinkedIn members in a series of hits with the aim of extracting information about U.S. government activities. This type of activity represents a very modern approach to spy-work. LinkedIn has around 575 million users.
Evanina works at the executive officer of the United States Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive, a position to which he was appointed to by President Trump. He was previously the director of the U.S. National Counterintelligence and Security Center.
In keeping with Evanina's concerns, in 2017 German intelligence services, according to Gizmodo, claimed that Chinese spies were targeting German government workers. The German security services estimated that over 10,000 had been contacted
In terms of what should be done, Evanina recommends that LinkedIn follows the response of Twitter, Google and Facebook, where the social media companies have attempted to eliminate fake accounts linked to Iranian and Russian intelligence agencies.
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