Beware of Greeks bearing gifts

by Volker Weber

An investigation conducted by “Le Monde Afrique” exposed Chinese espionage efforts.According to the report, for five years, between midnight and 2 a.m., computer servers were reaching a peak in data transfer activity. A computer scientist noticed the oddity of the situation. The organization’s technical staff later discovered that the AU servers were all connected to servers located in Shanghai.

In 2012, the Chinese government "graciously offered" African States a gift and constructed the African Union’s headquarters in Addis Ababa.

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Comments

Thanks for the heads up, Volker.

Hubert Stettner, 2018-01-31

Perhaps we should abstract from the actual countries and regions mentioned in the article and wonder what this means for the "cloud first" stuff some of our beloved software oligopolies are pushing? What can companies or governmental authorities do to keep control of information that is so sensitive that certain able entities are interested in? I am involved in that kind of stuff and out of experience I see that we are actually moving backwards in technology use (text editing with Notepad, unplugging IP phones in own offices to protect sensitive discussions) because avenues we used before make it impossible today to control data flows as most of these require some cloud connection. Software like Word makes it increasingly difficult to keep things reliably off the Microsoft cloud, and on-site installations of server software becomes more and more expensive, lags behind in functionality or is not available at all. And even then, things do not work in an heavily locked down environment without Internet access.

Or in short: what would we advice to credibly address the issues mentioned in the article?

Peter Daum, 2018-01-31

Die Open Telekom Cloud ist übrigens von Huawei.

Volker Weber, 2018-01-31

Für den Heimnutzer wird das interessant, wenn er koogeek.com Steckdosen als günstige Alternative zu Elgatos Eve Energy verwendet.
Koogeek bietet kein Impressum, weder auf der Webseite, noch auf den Bedienungsanleitungen. Außer, dass die Firma aus China (Shenzen, meine ich) kommt, weiß man nix.

Und dieser Firma vertraut man dann über ihre Koogeek Home App Vollzugriff auf seine Apple Home.

Jetzt zähle man zwei und zwei zusammen. Oder bin ich zu paranoid?

Nachtigall, ich höre dir trapsen...

Stefan Dorscht, 2018-01-31

Yeah, but who could have anticipated that China had ulterior motives? Sigh...

Amy Blumenfield, 2018-01-31

Best part of that article: "After the Chinese effort was exposed, the AU acquired its own servers and declined China’s offer to configure them."

Amy Blumenfield, 2018-01-31

Here is my problem, Amy. The US has ulterior motives as well. Otherwise they would not operate all that equipment on the roof of their Berlin embassy, with a line of sight to our government facilities. If the US government wants to block Huawei from selling phones, why exactly should we buy American phones or network equipment, or encryption for that matter.

Volker Weber, 2018-01-31

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.

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