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Chris Niccolls

Protect Yourself From Chinese Cyber-Spying

By February 20, 2013

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PHOTO: All Rights, Microsoft Corporation

The President and Congress are telling us... if you have any intellectual property, if you compete with a Chinese company, or if you are a vocal opponent of China's policies, the government of China is spying on you! The US and other governments have been engaged in "traditional" spying on other governments and individuals of interest (political leaders, potential terrorists), but only China is focused on the industrial-scale theft of American, UK and European corporate knowledge.

Even if you think your firm's network is well protected, or if your data has pretty good security, do you think your security can stand up to a concerted attack from the Chinese government? Take a look at what's been going on at the New York Times. When the NYT released a series of investigative articles about corruption in China, they suddenly started having network problems and lost files; after bribing in a data security firm to look into their problems, malware was discovered and traced back to government computers in China.

With the current state of computer security, no network may be 100% safe, but if you want to protect your data, you want to put that data somewhere that has better network security than you do. If you have the resources of the New York Times, you might augment your IT department with technology consultants or even outsource your security work. However, for most small, medium and even very large firms, it is easier and more effective to outsource your data to a storage site with world-class security. Services, such as Amazon's Web Services, provides data storage and processing capacity with much better security than at least 95% of corporations.

As cyber-spying turns into cyber-war, we're headed into ugly times on the Internet, and in the "Cloud." If you have any information of value, someone in China is trying to break into your data. You can try to fix this yourself, but moving your data to a higher security web service is the quickest and best way to frustrate the bad guys.

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