Minggu, 13 Desember 2020

Chinese Communist Party database leak reveals infiltration into Western companies -

An unprecedented data leak has revealed how alleged Chinese Communist Party members have embedded themselves inside some of the world’s biggest companies, including defence contractors, banks and pharmaceutical giants manufacturing coronavirus vaccines.

The Australian newspaper has obtained the leaked database of almost two million CCP members – including their party position, birthdate, national ID number and ethnicity – and 79,000 branches, many of them inside companies, universities and even government agencies.

Among the companies identified as having CCP members in their employ are manufacturers like Boeing and Volkswagen, drug giants Pfizer and AstraZeneca, and financial institutions including ANZ and HSBC, according to the reports.

The membership records also show that the CCP has infiltrated the Australian, British and US consulates in Shanghai, with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade using a Chinese government agency, the Shanghai Foreign Agency Service Department, to hire local staff.

“It is believed to be the first leak of its kind in the world,” The Australian journalist and Sky News host Sharri Markson said.

“What’s amazing about this database is not just that it exposes people who are members of the Communist Party, and who are now living and working all over the world, from Australia to the US to the UK, but it’s amazing because it lifts the lid on how the party operates under President and Chairman Xi Jinping.”

Markson said CCP branches had been set up inside western companies where members, “if called on, are answerable directly to the Communist Party” and President Xi himself. “It is also going to embarrass some global companies who appear to have no plan in place to protect their intellectual property from theft, from economic espionage,” she said.

RELATED: China is infiltrating Australia on multiple fronts, from politics to business, via its powerful and covert United Front agency

The data was reportedly extracted from a server in Shanghai in 2016 by Chinese dissidents, who used it for counterintelligence purposes.

It was later leaked to the international bipartisan group the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China, before being provided to a consortium of media organisations – The Australian, the UK’s Mail on Sunday, Belgium’s De Standaard and a Swedish editor.

There is no evidence anyone on the list has actually spied for China, but security experts have warned employing CCP members risks sensitive information falling into the hands of Beijing’s intelligence services.

“Allowing members of the CCP to work for such companies risks their stealing technology, providing intelligence to China on forthcoming weapons systems and capabilities, or on force structures built around those capabilities,” one intelligence officer told The Australian.

“Imagine if a CCP member was allowed to work on the new Australian submarine project, and got technical data on the performance of the subs. This would give the Chinese navy a massive advantage and put Australian lives at risk.”

RELATED: Australian universities’ secret ties to China to be investigated

One of those named on the list is Chen Hong, a Shanghai-based scholar and frequent visitor to Australia who had his visa revoked in September after being assessed as a possible security risk by ASIO.

Professor Chen has criticised Australia in articles for the state-run Global Times newspaper, describing the COVID-19 travel ban as racist and accusing the country of “stabbing China in the back” over Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s calls for an independent inquiry into the origins of the virus.

The Australian did not name the individual members on the list, only the companies they work for. Many of the companies, including Boeing, HP, Pfizer and HSBC declined to comment.

ANZ, which was identified as having 23 CCP members embedded in its China operations, said it did not interfere with its employees’ involvement in political groups and that “as long as employees’ behaviour is consistent with ANZ’s policies, we respect this right”.

An academic working at the University of NSW named on the list reportedly told his employer he was not a member of the CCP. “We recognise foreign interference is a significant threat to Australia’s national interest, including advice provided by ASIO that foreign governments seek information about leading research and technology,” a UNSW spokeswoman said.

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2020-12-13 21:45:14Z

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