Friday, October 20, 2017

Canada Plans to Reject Chinese Telecom Workers on Suspicion They Could Be Spies

Canada Plans to Reject Chinese Telecom Workers on Suspicion They Could Be Spies

A fourth person previously employed by Huawei, but married to someone who currently works for the company, was also told their application would be rejected, the Globe and Mail reported on Wednesday.
Huawei is the third largest manufacturer of smartphones in the world, operating in 170 countries with more than 170,000 employees. It came under fire when a scathing 2012 US House Intelligence Committee report alleged it was spying on Americans, a claim that was characterized by Huawei as "little more than an exercise in China-bashing." The UK and Australia have also raised concerns that the company was being used to gather intel for the Chinese government.
One applicant, who currently works for Huawei, received a letter dated March 18 from an immigration officer at the Canadian consulate in Hong Kong stating that the department was going to reject the application for permanent residency because the person does not "meet the requirements" for the visa. The letter, obtained by the South China Morning Post, goes into further detail, citing section 34(1)(f) of Canada's Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, which says that anyone believed to be engaged in "an act of espionage," subversion against the government, or terrorism, is inadmissible to the country.
This applicant's spouse also currently works for Huawei, according to the Globe.
An immigration officer sent another letter dated March 21 to the second applicant, who used to work for Huawei, on the same grounds. However, it added that the government is rejecting the application because the applicant's spouse, who still works for Huawei, "is a member of the inadmissible class," specifically someone believed to be engaging in spying, espionage, or subversion against the government.
Both applicants have denied being involved in spying, terrorism, and the like.
Jean-Francois Harvey, a Canadian immigration lawyer based in Hong Kong, is representing both couples in the matter and told the Globe their — unrelated — residency applications were submitted more than two years ago, and the timing of the rejection notices is more than coincidental.
"In 24 years [of my career], I've never seen such letters before. And the only thing in common with these persons is that they are Huawei employees," he said. Harvey has also represented more than 10 Huawei employees who have all immigrated to Canada successfully.
The government gave the applicants 30 days to file additional information in their cases. Harvey said they have done so, and are awaiting a reply from Immigration Canada.
A spokesperson for Huawei in Canada has previously told reporters the rejected applications have nothing to do with the company.
And Canada's Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRCC) department agrees.
"IRCC agrees with comments [that Huawei] has had an 'established, efficient and positive relationship' with the government since 2008," spokesperson Felix Corriveau told VICE News in an email, adding that the department does not comment on "specific situations" such as the applicants in this instance.
"[T]hat relationship, combined with the company's process for managing immigration applications and the successful number of applications over the past eight years ... reaffirms Huawei's belief that the applications in question have nothing to do with the company."
Corriveau said that applications to Canada from around the world are "assessed equally, regardless of their country of origin. Canadian and security admissibility screening processes are universal in their application and non-discriminatory."
Huawei currently employs 600 people in Canada, and first came to Ontario in 2010, when it received a multimillion-dollar grant from the provincial government. In return, the company pledged to create more than 160 jobs there over the next five years, and invest $67 million. In March, the company announced $303 million in new investment spending that would bring in 250 new jobs in Ontario over the next two years.

Free Trade Deal Is A Ruse For Chinese Communists To Take-Over Canada

Free Trade Deal Is A Ruse For Chinese Communists To Take-Over Canada

by Brian Wiggins
Chinese in Canada
The Emerging Face of Canada
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The Canadian Government is feverishly working, behind the scenes, and, according to the polls, against the wishes of the Canadian people, to close a trade deal with China. Canadians don't want any truck or trade, free or bilateral, with the communists in Beijing. It will be anything but free. The new Chinese Ambassador to Canada, Lu Shaye, comes straight from the Communist Party's Central Committee. He wants a free trade deal with Canada but only on China's terms. Shaye demands that its state owned enterprises (SOEs) be granted rights to acquire any Canadian resources or corporate entities that they desire. Any interference will be deemed impermissible "restraint of trade." That's disingenuous at best. Beijing also regards national-security reviews as "protectionism." We should be very cautious of the duplicitous regime in China.

Beijing Does Not Respect Us And Cannot Be Trusted

We're still seething over the fact that it wasn't until four years ago that Canada stopped sending "aid" to Beijing. Not until 2013 did it dawn on the Foreign Affairs department that China had become the world's second-largest economy. Over its final twelve years, Canada's aid package to China has cost Canadian taxpayers nearly a billion dollars. A great amount of that money was apparently spent on democratization and reform. All that money was clearly wasted, as President Xi's reversal of Chinese reforms has made so brutally clear. We'd like our money back.

The Hytera/Norsat Communications deal has turned sour, as expected. Hytera was suddenly expelled from their mobile-technology trade association for its involvement in disputed bidding on a police contract. It's not surprising that there were also allegations of business "malfeasance." Motorola is still in litigation with Hytera, accusing the Chinese firm of "large-scale theft" of its proprietary technology. Make no mistake, Hytera (or a team of the estimated 100,000 Chinese state-sponsored cyber-warriors) hacked into Motorola's servers and stole their technology. Let's not let cultural relativism get in the way of trade policy. We do not share the same values as China. Not even remotely. Neo-Confucianism is not Judeo-Christianity. Why are we doing business with these people and why are we not pursuing trade with our traditional allies and friends from Europe and particularly the United States where we share the same culture and traditions, including the English language, common law, and intellectual property rights? In the end, a "free trade" deal with China will end in tears for Canadians and we don't need them to be prosperous.

China refuses to abide by the rules, regulations and principals of the World Trade Organization (WTO). They are illegally subsidizing exports. They have absolutely no worker health and safety standards and effectively employ slave labour. They have routinely manipulated their currency and refuse to abide by even rudimentary environmental standards. No surprise that they want us to sell them Canada's pristine water. China's waterways are a toxic environmental catastrophe of biblical proportions. More worrisome still is the fact that they have no respect for intellectual property and are stealing and counterfeiting everything and anything.

China Behaves Like A Neocolonial Power In Canada

I find it disconcerting, no alarming, that Vancouver is now 43% Asian and only 36% Euro-Canadian and according to StatsCan, "Canadians" will be halved again by 2030. This great Canadian City has become a suburb of Shanghai, without the consent of the Canadian people. John Mersheimer at the University of Chicago, argues that the West in general, but specifically the United States, is in a "Thucydides Trap" with China that will turn "hot" inside thirty years. It will be interesting when push comes to shove over China's outrageous territorial claims in the South and East China Seas and Taiwan. Where will Canada stand at that time?
Chinese money laundered through Canadian realestate robs our children of the chance to have their own homes

Worse still is the massive amount of money being laundered through Canadian realestate. So much so, that our children and grandchildren will never own homes, at least not in Canada's formerly great cities. Canadians will have to live with "intensification"-"vertically integrated," with three generations forced to live under one roof. Chinese "Trans-Nationals" get the real estate, with corrupt money, pay little or no taxes, don't contribute, and force Canadians, who built the physical and social infrastructure out of their own market. I like to call this "assured lower standard of living" (ALSL). The same people who coach little league soccer and hockey and volunteer at the local hospital continue to pay the taxes that maintains that magnificent infrastructure. Perhaps we should be thankful. We get "diversity" in return. Nice trade. Enough is enough. Don't let them bully us and don't appease them. 
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The Australians are finally coming to their senses and finally standing up to Beijing but it's almost too late for them. China has already purchased significant swaths of Australian property including ports, farms, homes, and even critical electrical infrastructure. China has now set their sights on Canada. Grouse Mountain was sold to a Chinese SOE recently, in addition to Norsat Communications mentioned above, and they have a large equity stake in Teck Resources. Quan Chong, a Deputy to the National People's Congress, sits on the Board of Directors. They are just getting started.

"Win-win" Means China Wins Twice

The West's favoured "win-win" approach to trade has failed miserably and will continue to fail. While we fret about gender pronouns virtually all of China's top thinkers see the future in relatively stark terms: China wins, barbarians lose. "Win-win" means China wins twice. This is so well understood in China that it is a National joke. The first win comes in terms of the deal, which they humbly argue should favour China because they are an "underdeveloped" country. The second "win" comes when they arrogantly and deceitfully cheat on the terms. The big losers in these "negotiations" are Western workers, Western (and Canadian) businesses and Western prosperity.
China thinks the West is too naïve, and too stupid to understand that they are waging war

Canada needs to understand that President Xi Jinping not only wants to redress the humiliations of the 19th and 20th centuries but the Middle Kingdom believes that it is their manifest destiny to usher in a new Sinocentric order. They are determined to be the undisputed hegemon of the 21st century and are ruthlessly pursuing that goal. China has been in a decades-long covert cyberwar against the West and Canada and have stolen billions and billions of dollars in intellectual property, particularly, so called "dualuse" technology. They are also feverishly uncovering cyber-vulnerabilities in Canada, the United States and what is left of the West in general that could be exploited in the possibility, some argue inevitability, of open conflict. This also explains their almost pathological drive to bolster "soft-power" with radio networks and Confucian Institutes inside Canada and the West in general. It's also why the PRC is engaged in an "undeclared" trade war with us.

China thinks the West is too naïve, and too stupid to understand that they are waging war. There is, indeed, very little time to waste. As Steven Bannon, former White House Strategist, noted in a recent interview: 
The economic war with China is everything. And we have to be maniacally focused on that. If we continue to lose it, we're five years away, I think, ten years at the most, of hitting an inflection point from which we'll never be able to recover." (Interview in The American Prospect, August 2017).
Stop treating China's leaders as if they were our democratic friends from Europe, the United States or Japan, when in fact this is a murderous regime every bit as brutal as Stalin's Russia. Their Human Rights record is appalling. There is evidence that they are harvesting human organs on an industrial scale. They are racist. They have treated their own minorities including Tibet, horrifically. Let's get our heads out of the sand. Rather than trading with these SOEs, we should encourage swift justice for Chinese spies caught in Canada; strong sanctions against Chinese cyber-warfare, and zero tolerance for currency manipulation. Finally, Mr. Trudeau should assure Canadians workers that, "We are not going to ship your job to Guangzhou or Shanghai for products made more cheaply because of slave labor, illegal export subsidies, blatant piracy, and an undervalued yuan." Sorry, too late.

China would never allow a Western or Canadian company to buy any Chinese firm in a "strategic industry." Those industries include aircraft, autos, energy, finance, technology, natural resources, and just about anything more sophisticated than fast food. Because of the strategic threat from foreign governments gaining control of Canadian private and public companies and industries, we should pass legislation preventing domestic private firms from entertaining offers from state-owned enterprises, whether they are Chinese, Russian, or otherwise. Period.

The entry fee for any Canadian company wishing to scale China's "Great Walls" of protectionism and sell into local markets is not just to surrender its technology to Chinese partners. Canadian companies (read Western companies in general) must also move research and development facilities to China, thereby exporting the "seed" of future Canadian job creation to a hostile competitor.

Canadians also find it alarming that China's growth has funded one of the most rapid and comprehensive military buildups the world has ever witnessed. Every "Walmart dollar" Canadians now spend on artificially cheap Chinese imports represents both a down payment on our own unemployment and additional financing for a rapidly arming China that is increasing aiming those weapons at us. Make no mistake, China is developing advanced weapons systems — many of which have been stolen from us or our allies by Chinese spies.

Fair Trade Or No Trade

China's distorted brand of communist-style, mercantilist, "state capitalism" has completely shredded the principles of both free markets and free trade. In their place, China's state-backed "national champions" have refused to lay down their "weapons of job destruction," to paraphrase author Peter Navarro, so why not pass the "Canadian Free and Fair Trade Act." This Act would set out the following simple ground rules — with appropriately tough sanctions for failing to play by them: 
Any nation wishing to trade freely in manufactured goods with Canada must abandon all illegal export subsidies, maintain a fairly valued currency, offer strict protections for intellectual property, uphold environmental and health and safety standards that meet international norms, provide for an unrestricted global market in energy and raw materials, and offer free and open access to its domestic markets, including media and Internet services. (Peter W. Navarro and Greg Autry, Death by China: Confronting the Dragon, 2011)
Finally, it is immoral to trade with China. China is one of the most egregious human rights violators in the world. China's Communist Party imposes strict limits on the expressive, religious, and journalistic rights of its people. Strict population control laws force women who become pregnant after having two children to undergo forced state abortions. This has led to the world's most appalling gendercide in recorded history. Dissidents have reported being used for medical experiments, cut open, and forced to sell their organs on the black market for the government's profit. Christians face arrest, torture, and beatings if they do not belong to the "Three-Self Patriotic Church," the state-approved Christian institution. There is no moral justification for trade with this communist regime. Please, cease trading and disengage with governments that beat, torture, and kill its citizens for dissent. Leave them build their belt and road and partner with Pakistan.
Already in a trade deficit of 44 billion dollars annually, we have to stand up to China

We have a Burkean responsibility to stand up to China or generations of Canadians yet unborn will never forgive us. We're already in a trade deficit of roughly $44 billion dollars annually to Beijing. Warren Buffet refers to this as "conquest by purchase" and warns that foreigners will eventually own so much of the "West" (including Canada) that Canadians will wind up working longer hours just to eat and service the debt. Never mind thriving in China's century, we should be focused on surviving. Canadians want no truck or trade with the totalitarians on steroids in Beijing. Chinese President Xi Jinping makes U.S. President Donald Trump look like Ghandi. No "free" trade deal with China. We don't need them to prosper.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

China is making fools out of Australia's politicians..the same can be said for Canada's too

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Dragon's eye threatens Tibet


Dragon's eye  threatens Tibet 

 Editorial |  10 Oct 2017 9:59 AM

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Dragon's eye poses threat to Tibet  Editorial |  10 Oct 2017 9:59 AM With rising Chinese oppression and its failure to get adequate international support, the Tibetan movement for survival and autonomy is steadily losing visibility. Upset with the indifferent attitude of the international community and the United States towards this most afflicted nonviolent resistance movement, the Tibetan government-in-exile had no option other than to convene a first-of-its-kind conference, named Five-Fifty Forum, recently, to outline their future plans. This included a five-year plan for pursuing a return to dialogue and negotiations with China. The delegates vowed that if that plan could not be achieved within a stipulated span of time, the Tibetans would plan for another 50 years of resistance to China's occupation, systematic repression and attempted cultural genocide in Tibet. Notably, the nationalist Tibetans are neither seeking ethnic purity like the militant Buddhist nationalists in Myanmar nor demanding a separate state like the Kurds in Iraq. The Tibetan leadership-in-exile at Dharmashala in India is pursuing a proverbial 'middle-way approach' of their deity Lord Buddha that seeks limited autonomy within the Chinese system. Tibet is ranked second in the list of the least free places in the world, by Freedom House. Despite this, it does not make enough ripples in the global media, whereas Syria and North Korea continue to dominate the headlines, thanks to the threat of terrorism and nuclear war. One reason for this can be attributed to the mode of resistance adopted by the Tibetans. On the other hand, China is keeping its dragon's eye on the Tibetan Plateau with all the possible measures, including the advanced electronic surveillance and deployment of spies. Chinese President Xi Jinping's belief that security and stability in Tibet is his goal, is causing a fatal impact on the Tibetans. Not only that, President Trump has also ignored the issues of human rights and nonviolent movements in Tibet. This, despite the fact that the Tibet issue could provide the pressure point that Trump has been seeking in his dealings with Beijing. Economic leverage hasn't worked to influence China's calculus on matters such as North Korea, but adding the Tibet issue to the US-China agenda would attract the Chinese leadership's attention.

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The internet of hacked things

The internet of hacked things

As the internet and the real world increasingly intersect, hackers are infiltrating critical infrastructure. We explore some of the most notorious cases.


Satellite communications

Newsat was once Australia’s biggest satellite company, with systems carrying sensitive communications for the Australian Defence Force and mining companies.
In a 2013 meeting called by the Australian Signals Directorate, former IT manager Daryl Peter was told the company had been seriously infiltrated by foreign hackers. Mr Peter believed the hack was from China.
Newsat’s former chief financial officer, Michael Hewins, said the company’s IT staff were told its computers had been compromised in one of the worst cases Australian intelligence had ever seen.
They were told Newsat would not be allowed to launch its flagship Jabiru 1 satellite until major changes were made.
Jabiru 1 was a five-tonne state-of-the-art satellite that NewSat promised to launch, but it never got off the ground as the company eventually collapsed and went into administration.

Bureau of Meteorology

In April, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull confirmed the Bureau of Meteorology had suffered a significant cyber intrusion that was first discovered in 2015.
It was the first time there was official acknowledgement that a critical Australian Government agency had been penetrated by a sophisticated cyber attack.
The Government did not say it publicly but Australian intelligence sources have confirmed to the ABC that China was behind the attack.
Four Corners has been told the Bureau of Meteorology was probably just a gateway for a more sinister attack.
China’s true targets may have been the Australian Geospatial Intelligence Organisation, which provides satellite imagery for sensitive defence operations, and a high-tech Royal Australian Air Force radar system called the Jindalee Operational Radar Network (JORN).
The JORN system is designed to detect planes and maritime vessels within a 3,000-kilometre radius of Australia’s northern and western shorelines.
Beijing continues to deny responsibility for the attack.

Nuclear facilities

Stuxnet is the first cyberweapon known to cause actual physical damage.
At the time of its 2010 discovery by security researchers, it was the most sophisticated malware identified in the public realm.
Stuxnet targeted devices that automate electro-mechanical processes to sabotage Iran’s uranium enrichment program in Natanz.
Since the nuclear facilities were not connected to the Internet, it is believed that the malware was deployed by infecting employees’ home computers, and carried unknowingly into the facility via a USB flash drive.
Once inside the facility, the malware proceeded to override the Iranian scientists’ internal network, forcing the centrifuges to spin at self-destructive speeds while making it appear that nothing abnormal was occurring.
It was not until loud noises were heard from the centrifuge chambers that Iran’s nuclear scientists became aware that their system was failing.
It took another five months before researchers discovered that the culprit: Stuxnet.
Stuxnet is believed to have resulted in the destruction of roughly one-fifth of Iran’s centrifuge stockpile.
It also represented an unprecedented moment in history, when cyber warfare finally spilled over into the physical domain

Power grids

The first publicly acknowledged successful cyber intrusion to knock a power grid offline occurred in Ukraine during December 2015.
Widespread service outages were reported and it was soon discovered that about 30 substations became disconnected from the grid, leaving more than 225,000 customers freezing in the Ukrainian winter chill.
The attackers are also believed to have spammed the Ukrainian utility’s customer-service centre with phone calls in order to prevent real customers from requesting assistance.
This was no opportunist act of hacktivism: those responsible were running a sophisticated and stealthy operation that would have required months of reconnaissance.
Although power was restored hours later, many functions had to be controlled manually for months to come; the firmware inside the control centres running the substations had been rendered inoperable by the attack.
Later, US security researchers found that the authors of the malware were writing in Russian. This malware was dubbed BlackEnergy.


In July 2015, American security researchers Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek demonstrated they could remotely hack a 2014 Jeep Cherokee, allowing them to control the car’s transmission and brakes.
The vulnerability they had discovered was exploited via the wi-fi in the car’s multimedia system; the number of affected vehicles ran into the millions.
They discovered they could crack a car’s password through a method known as brute-forcing: literally decoding it through automated guesswork.
Since then, a number of other vehicles have proved to be vulnerable to hacking, including models manufactured by Tesla, BMW, Nissan and Mercedes Benz.
In response to security concerns, Tesla and Fiat Chrysler have both announced the establishment of bug bounty programs.
Such programs allow independent security researchers to submit vulnerabilities they discover to the company and can be compensated thousands of dollars for their efforts.

Bureau of Meteorology hacked by foreign spies in massive malware attack, report shows

Bureau of Meteorology hacked by foreign spies in massive malware attack, report shows

Updated 11 Oct 2016, 3:13pm
A foreign power managed to install malicious software — known as malware — on the Australian Bureau of Meteorology's computer system to steal sensitive documents and compromise other government networks, an official cyber security report has revealed.

Key points:

  • Malware popular with "state-sponsored cyber adversaries" found on BOM computers
  • Security controls in place "insufficient" to block BOM network from "common" cybercrime threats, report says
  • Minster says "espionage is alive and well" but no country named responsible
The 2016 Australian Cyber Security Centre Threat report, to be released today, provides new details on last year's attack on the bureau, which also breached sensitive systems across the Federal Government.
It is not known what the motivation for the attack was, but experts have suggested it could be commercial, strategic or both.
The bureau is considered a critical national resource, and another state would place a high value on its intellectual property and scientific research.
According to the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) report, the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) last year detected suspicious activity from two computers on the bureau's network.
"On investigation, ASD identified the presence of particular Remote Access Tool (RAT) malware popular with state-sponsored cyber adversaries, amongst other malware associated with cybercrime," the report stated.
"The RAT had also been used to compromise other Australian government networks.
"In this instance, ACSC attributed the primary compromise to a foreign intelligence service, however, security controls in place were insufficient to protect the network from more common threats associated with cybercrime.
"CryptoLocker ransomware found on the network represented the most significant threat to the bureau's data retention and continuity of operations.
"ASD identified evidence of the adversary searching for and copying an unknown quantity of documents from the bureau's network.
"This information is likely to have been stolen by the adversary," the ACSC report concludes.

'Espionage is alive and well'

The ABC has previously been told China was behind the breach, but the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Cyber Security, Dan Tehan, would not be drawn on which foreign state was believed to be responsible.
"We don't narrow it down to specific countries, and we do that deliberately, but what we have indicated is that cyber espionage is alive and well and that's why we want to be transparent in this report about the incident," Mr Tehan said.
In December, the ABC was told it would cost millions of dollars to plug the security breach.
The ACSC said between January 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016, ASD responded to 1,095 cyber security incidents on government systems which were considered "serious enough to warrant operational responses".
"Cyber security is something that we as a nation have to take very seriously; as a government, as business and as individuals," Mr Tehan said.
"And what we want to do is continue to be more transparent about what is going on in this area and that's what this report is about."

Spies and the Australian Public Service

Spies and the Australian Public Service

Spies and the Australian Public Service
Civil Servants vulnerable to foreign infiltration
With Australia positioned uniquely in Asia but with its roots in the west, the government’s civil service – the Australian Public Service (APS) – seems extremely vulnerable to foreign infiltration and the government does remarkably little about it. 
The public service has never been identified as threatened and lies primarily unprotected. The Australian Security Intelligence Organization, the country’s counterspy apparatus, has spent massive time and resources on trying vainly to catch agents cultivating targets.
The APS employs more than 243,300 civil servants, with another 1.5 million in the respective state public services. Tens of thousands of outside contractors and consultants serve the government as well, representing more than 16.4 percent of all Australian jobs. Today, more than 22 percent of employees were born in another country and more than 14.5 percent of employees come from non-English speaking backgrounds, notably South Central Asia, East Asia, Southeast Asia and Eastern Europe.  The services are much more reflective of Australian society today, but also much more open to potential infiltration.
In addition, much of the work done within the APS is handled by outside contractors, such as the London-based VFS Global, which through directorships is related to Booz, Allan & Hamilton, closely involved in the area of predictive intelligence for a number of foreign governments. There have been a number of cases of confidential client data negligence,security compromises and data leakage associated with this contractor.
Another major change to the APS is reliance upon regulation rather than legislation. This has strengthened the service, taking power away from the Parliament and Executive, as the majority of government decisions now reside within the bureaucracy. The service now plays a much more directive role today than in the past. Consequently, if any person or organization wants information or to influence decision making or future policy, the public service is the institution to target, rather than the Parliament and Executive. In addition, the focus of espionage today appears to be more commercially orientated than politically orientated.
The APS can be infiltrated in many ways, and there is also a long history of it happening. However evidence and details are difficult to pin down, let alone act upon. Accusations are at best based upon unproven suspicion and speculation. Massive resources have been allocated to protect the APS against some of the newer methods of infiltration such as cyber attacks, but little protection has been developed for some of the more traditional methods of infiltration.
 According to a Victorian Government Anti-Corruption Commission Report in 2015, the target of potential infiltrators include “sensitive information or systems, decision-making processes, matrices or criteria, property or goods with a high resale value, (and) knowledge that facilitates criminal activity.” Targets thus include areas and computers where information is stored, work areas, and vulnerable individuals. These individuals would include senior executives and their assistants, help desk staff, system and network administrators, employees with access to sensitive information, employees with remote access, and people who interact with employees.
Cultivating Targeted People
The APS has had a history of foreign infiltration ever since its formation, especially during the Cold War, with some infiltrations becoming public scandals. The recently released history of the Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASDIO) has documented how deeply Canberra was penetrated by Soviet spies since the 1940s. In addition, Des Ball and David Horner in their book Breaking the Codes elaborated with details from ASIO files of a Soviet spy ring led by a KGB officer Gerontiy Pavlovich Lazovik, who recruited public servants, diplomats, MPs, and journalists to supply him information from many government departments and ministries during the 1970s. This information was sent from the Soviet Embassy in Canberra to both the Soviet KGB and GRU.
The cultivation of David Combe, a former Australian Labour Party National Secretary by then KGB officer Valery Ivanov, led to shock and despair within the Hawke government in the 1980s, with Combe banned from any contact with government officials. More recently, in 2012 a Vietnamese security agent Luong Ngoc Anh cultivated a romantic relationship with Australian Trade Representative Elizabeth Masamune, who at the time had access to classified trade briefings. The next year, South Korean agents were caught cultivating public servants to obtain trade secrets. The Chinese too have been accused of cultivating Australian public servants through providing them with lavish holidays in China.
Australia’s closest ally the United States is no stranger to the game. For many years the US Embassy in Canberra and consulates in Melbourne and Sydney cultivated potential future Australian leaders and assisted them to undertake trips to the US.
Today, public service employees are much more openly prone to persuasion, pressure, and even blackmail by existing friends, family members, and by members of their respective ethnic communities. This was reflected in the case of Yeon Kim being cultivated by  Hoo-Young Park of the South Korean National Intelligence Service through regular Sunday afternoon soccer matches in Canberra. A common language, cultural background and social interaction are powerful tools in cultivation and persuasion.
Chen Yonglin, a former Chinese defense attaché who defected to Australia in 2005, has warned that China has in excess of 1200 spies scattered through both the community and government departments, indicating that foreign infiltration into the APS is now in epidemic proportions.
Embedded Agents
We can only speculate about embedded agents within the APS, as none have ever been captured during their careers. Consequently, it may take years before documents, reports, and books put any light onto potential contemporary agents within the service.
Australian National University Professor Des Ball in preparing his book Breaking the Codescame across sources of information that ASIO would not have had at the time. Ball asserts that then secretary of the Department of External Affairs during the 1940s, John Burton was probably a Soviet intelligence agent, who had up to a dozen agents working with him in the department.
The exposure of agents within the Australian Public Service is extremely difficult and most often requires historians to uncover other sources of information and match them with what information was available at the time before speculations can be made. So it will not be until midway through this current century before historians are able to cast educated suspicions upon the service today. As a pointer, it was only last year that ASIO actually admitted that the organization was infiltrated by foreign spies in the 1970s and 1980s.
Consultants and Contractors
The consultant and contracting out of government work in Australia has been growing at almost 4 percent annually with A$687 million paid out to consultants in 2015. Consultants and contractors are being used for temporary work, exhibitions, event management, policy development work, data management and computer programming, etc. This doesn’t include the costs of contractors for security, cleaning, and rubbish removal etc. In addition there are consultants who specialize in lobbying the Australian and state governments, many of them ex-ministers, or ex-public servants.
Many consultants and contractors have access to at least sensitive and private information, if not some classified information, without necessarily any security screening. Through the Australian Immigration contractor VFS, confidential information found its way into the public domain. Consequently, information that consultants and contractors handle can inadvertently be put into the public domain, or at worst be compromised through a conflict of interest and passed on to foreign parties.
Unfortunately there is very little transparency in the work that consultants undertake for the government. Many are ex-ministers or public service employees, who in need of revenue may also work with foreign bodies, thus creating potential conflicts of interest. For example, former Australian Trade Minister Andrew Robb, an economic consultant, immediately upon leaving government took a ‘well paid’ consultancy job with a Chinese company aligned to the Communist Party of China that operates the Port of Darwin. 
Consultants are not subject any code of conduct, unlike ministers and public servants. Many contracts are given out to ex-employees without any public tendering process, or through a pseudo-process where any terms of reference only suit the person a ministry has in mind. The process of hiring outside consultants has been so sensitive that Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has refused to reveal where the federal government has spent funds, although according to Daily Telegraph reports, most of the recipients are former politicians and public servants.
 Cyber Espionage
Cyber operations have become the fifth dimension of warfare. Cyber attacks can destroy systems, bring down public infrastructure and be used to collect information from remote systems. Government data networks are under constant daily attacks. It is very difficult to prove, but large volumes of data are being siphoned out of government data systems and processed in some manner in China. According to Four Corners, the Ministries of Defence, Prime Minister, and Foreign Affairs have all been hacked, and information such as emails are continuously collected. In addition the Bureau of Metrology was recently attacked and Austrade is infiltrated. According to Four Corners, even the blueprints to ASIO’s new headquarters in Canberra have been stolen, preventing the organization moving in on building completion, as the inside had to be completely redesigned.
The Australian Cyber Security Commission 2016 Threat Report states that it is “aware of (foreign) state based adversaries attempting cyber espionage against Australian systems to satisfy strategic, operational, and commercial intelligence requirements”.
Sovereignty lost. Australia doesn’t know it.
Besides territory and culture, the heart of Australian sovereignty is the information and decision-making processes inside the institutions which enable the country to operate smoothly with integrity.
Australia’s geopolitical position between China and the United States presents the country with specific issues that other countries in the region don’t face. This is compounded by the fact that the composition of the Australian Public Service is most likely to have a percentage of employees who through dual citizenship have a pledge of loyalty to another country other than Australia. This is a characteristic that other civil services in the region don’t exhibit and are therefore potentially less vulnerable to foreign infiltration than the APS.
ASIO has historically been extremely poor in shifting through the public service for moles, and employees who have been compromised through cultivation by foreign diplomats and intelligence operatives.  Given what Chinese defector Yonglin has said, that Chinese agents reside in the general and student populations and have infiltrated the government, makes the job of exposing those who are cultivated or put under duress to provide sensitive information to outsiders even more difficult for ASIO.
In fact the job of uncovering people who have been cultivated may rely purely on tipoffs, as security organizations resources are now heavily focused on the “war on terror” in line with Australia’s loyalty to the US alliance.
Something has to be done to protect the security integrity and sovereignty of the Australian Public Service. This is of paramount importance when Australia has placed so many of its strategic assets and business interests in foreign hands. To ignore the problem will be at Australia’s peril.