You wonder in sheer amazement about the moves James Bond carries, hence, somewhere fueling your desire to learn about MI6. You watch in shock and awe as Ethan Hunt, along with his fabled “Impossible Mission Force” pulls of stunts with ostentatious guts and daring, going as far as sabotaging the CIA’s next move.
You’ve also witnessed impassioned debates concerning the superiority of The Mossad vis-a-vis the ISI. And possibly, at every such occasion, you’ve secretly harvested a desire to be an operative yourself.
Yet- it is funny- that hardly has it ever occurred to you at a time where all revered intelligence agencies are doing what they have to- to keep the world afloat in their own special ways- what on earth must be China doing?
Most don’t even give it much thought or bother themselves with a pretty genuine question; wouldn’t the Chinese intelligence be doing something at least, in its bid to cater to a forever protruding economy? Perhaps, that may come across as a relevant question instead of, “Does China have an intel-agency in the first place?”
Having said that, while most among us wouldn’t even bat an eyelid on matters concerning espionage, personal safety, and matters like liberty and human freedom for clearly it appears that Ms. Meghan Markle’s pregnancy, Priyanka and Nick Wedding, and why go that far- Mukesh Ambani’s daughter’s wedding- seem more important for the public-at-large, it appears that being utterly ignorant (about less trivial things) may not, after all, be wise.
To some, understanding the actions carried out by the Ministry of State Security, especially in the recent times, could be likened to understanding the way the world unfolds itself around us if you thought about it? Think about it. Had it not even matter, why would the Chinese intelligence (and whatever it is up to) have found more than a section in the Economist (not a publication dedicated to defence or warcraft).
At a time where the rules of espionage are changing, data constantly being the most watched, closely-followed asset, here comes a piece of news that may surely leave many unsuspecting Indians surprised.
China’s Ministry of State Security (also known as the MSS) has also let itself loose on India and might have eloped with a few secrets here and there. Some worst fears were realized when international media delivered a shout out on 2 Chinese nationals who were singled out for their involvement in cyber-spying on not one but twelve different countries.
Of these, it appeared, was India.
What was China trying to get out of India, we are yet to precisely note.
But now, one might be actually compelled to think about the MSS a bit more seriously as none other than the Department of Justice (USA) caught the two Chinese hackers who carried some online attacks in the more recent past.
The worry, strange as it may sound, is that the MSS may have also directed an online attack over India comprehensively in the recent past.
At present, these online hackers, all part of one group known as APT10, it is believed, have eloped with a lot of information as extracted from the country’s servers.
Where the recent past goes then, as a matter of fact, MSS actually hacked into 40 computers of the American navy.
Would you believe it? One can’t be blamed for being reminded of the proficiency of the Israeli Stuxnet campaign, an effort believably deliberately orchestrated along with the US to sabotage the Iranian nuclear power program?
Implicit in this spy-game- so to speak- has been the rise and rise of new terminology: spy mercenaries. So, who are they?
The Cyber Mercenaries, are freelancers too; they can be hired to ‘do all the damage,’ experts claim.
Now you can wax lyrical all day about China catching other nations off-guard howsoever you wanted but something’s ought to be done.
The following should worry the government.
Apparently, the Chinese involvement in noting India’s cyberspace in great detail may have been constant even before 2018.
That is precisely why the Ministry of State Security’s hacking into India’s cyber-space cannot be undermined or treated as some random activity.
Well, you don’t treat such instances as being a child’s play when none other than the IT Minister of your country admits to it. India’s IT minister Ravishankar Prasad shared that in 2018 alone, as many as 100 government websites of India had been ‘hacked’ by the Chinese intel.
That’s just 100; thankfully?
It remains to be seen what India is going to do about this?