The NSA Effect: China tells its banks to remove IBM servers as Spyware

China tells its banks to remove IBM servers over snooping fears (via The Inquirer)

THE CHINESE GOVERNMENT has urged its banks to stop using servers built by IBM because it believes that they might be used for espionage. According to unnamed sources cited by Bloomberg, the People’s Bank of China and the Chinese Ministry of Finance…


Democracy Now! from a couple of weeks ago: “”Collect It All”: Glenn Greenwald on NSA Bugging Tech Hardware, Economic Espionage & Spying on U.N.”

4 Responses

  1. A little hard to take it seriously though. Software is a bigger spyware risk than hardware and Windows is still widely used in China. Back in 1999, Red Flag Linux was touted by the Chinese Government as their replacement for foreign controlled operating systems. Red Flag was wound up early this year with unpaid wages although a usable alternative could easily have been built giving the state of Linux and Chinese resources.

    • Actually IBM servers consist of lots of IBM hardware AND software. The “hardware” often consists of physical chips PLUS firmware that can easily be hacked by the NSA. On top of the hardware is a very complex Operating system that the NSA has very probably hacked, then on top of the operating system are all the applications which could also be hacked by the NSA. In reality, China is quite correct to be concerned because the NSA has full access to all aspects of IBM servers. As for Linux, there are several very good Chinese versions from companies in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan and there are indications that Linux has a fairly good acceptance rate in China. As for Windows, it has also probably been heavily hacked by the NSA, so most of the world is an open book for the NSA.

  2. Most every piece of hardware runs on simple firmware “software”. Before any operating system boot up to run an application or before any custom industrial machine resets “finds home “dozens of firmware and logic circuits are already activated. In the transportation industry the temperature, load, RPM, road grade and such are logged and transmitted. The engines on flight 370 were reporting their condition hours after reported missing. As popular as banking data is, I would not be surprised if its privacy has been violated since the very first bank opened.

  3. China has very valid concerns given how much the NSA has hacked into Google, Microsoft and the other US tech giants. Already the “cloud computing” concept is taking a major hit because people outside the US fear the NSA will read all their data when it is stored in the “clouds” provided by US companies. personally, I would NEVER store anything in the “cloud.”

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