13:16 GMT23 June 2021
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    It’s being reported that microchips were inserted into US computer equipment that was built in China in order to steal US technology secrets. Tech giants Apple and amazon deny they were targeted by Chinese hackers. Sputnik spoke to Pierluigi Paganini a Cyber security expert on these allegations around microchips.

    Sputnik: What do you make of the allegations by Bloomberg about these microchips?

    Pierluigi Paganini: I believe it is difficult in this moment to have a clear definition of what has happened. The report published by Bloomberg speaks about chip implanted Chinese state sponsored hackers into electronic manufactured by four major US companies and the Defense Agencies. This is frankly very scary in my view. On the other hand we have companies that deny the presence of the chips, so at this moment its difficulty to express a clear idea about what has happened. We need to wait for further investigations in this.

    Sputnik: What damage could these chips have potentially done?

    Pierluigi Paganini: We are speaking about the alleged compromise of hardware supply chain, and this is one of the more severe scenarios for security. Attackers can gain the full control over the effected equipment that is used by major companies and government agencies. This opens the door to cyber espionage and sabotage activities. At this time we have no news on major incidents that involved the companies indicated in the Bloomberg report this means probably means they used the chips to steal material from the compromised systems.

    Sputnik: What impact could these have on companies and their manufacturing process abroad?

    Pierluigi Paganini: Well I believe the impact is very severe, assuming the presence of the chips is confirmed, this can have a significant impact on the supply chain of the companies and the organizations. The company’s failure to monitor the supply chain, and the lack of hardware and software qualification and the process of moving the production abroad of electronic equipment in order to reduce the costs. I think we have two main impacts in term of economic issues. We have to consider the effect of companies needs to rearrange the supply chains and the other impact is on the reputation of the companies.

    The views expressed in this article are those of the speaker, and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.


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