The recent conviction of Chi Mak, a Chinese-born engineer working for a US Defense contractor who “slept” for 20 years before being activated in order to swipe sensitive military documents, is bringing to light what US Intelligence insiders have long known, that the Chinese government has a vast network of agents already at work in the US:
The Chinese government, in an enterprise that one senior official likened to an “intellectual vacuum cleaner,” has deployed a diverse network of professional spies, students, scientists and others to systematically collect U.S. know-how, the officials said. Some are trained in modern electronic techniques for snooping on wireless computer transactions. Others, such as Mak, are technical experts who have been in place for years and have blended into their communities.
“Chi Mak acknowledged that he had been placed in the United States more than 20 years earlier, in order to burrow into the defense-industrial establishment to steal secrets,” Joel Brenner, the head of counterintelligence for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, said in an interview. “It speaks of deep patience,” he said, and is part of a pattern.
Peeking duck indeed.