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11:53AM

Wikistrat's chief analyst quoted in Reuters piece on cyber struggle landscape

Disagreements on cyber risk East-West "Cold War"

Fri Feb 3, 2012 11:32pm IST

LONDON - With worries growing over computer hacking, data theft and the risk of digital attacks destroying essential systems, western states and their allies are co-operating closer than ever on cyber security . . . 

But many Western security specialists say the evidence against both nations -- particularly China -- has become increasingly compelling.

"China is currently engaged in a maximal industrial espionage effort that it justifies internally in terms of a catch up strategy (with the West)," says Thomas Barnett, chief analyst at political risk consultancy Wikistrat and a former strategist for the U.S. Navy. "The key question here is: can China assume the mantle of intellectual property rights respect fast enough to avoid triggering economic warfare of the West... If it can't, then this is likely to get ugly."

Read the entire column at Reuters.

Reader Comments (1)

What you see is China trying in vain to catch up by stealing ideas. This can't work. Two reasons 1. Product life cycles are now so short that by the time you steal something, it's already becoming obsolete. 2. Many times the bits you can steal are insufficient to being able to acquire a technology. You need to know lot of background information. You need to have supporting suppliers.

What these attempts are motivated by is, I think largely an ill-conceived plan to try to obtain an expertise without having to engage with other countries and surrender a portion of control.

I also suspect that China's intellectual firepower is actually worse than most people assume. I know in China when I talk to engineers (always in Chinese) the only one's that ever seem to really get combustion issues are 70 or 80 year old consultants. For whatever reason engineers in their 40s or 50s are just not very good (the cultural revolution is certainly a factor) and much more motivated by careerism and corruption.

China needs to massively integrate more with the rest of the world in order to continue to progress economically. The Chinese Communist Party seems to have other priorities.

February 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDavid Dunn

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