LinkedIn, the professional social network, is apparently being used aggressively by China to recruit spies in the United States. This according to the U.S. National Counterintelligence and Security Center chief William Evanina. He says that intelligence agencies in China are behind a “super aggressive” campaign to recruit spies on LinkedIn. It’s a platform that’s widely used for job search in the United States and elsewhere.
Evanina told Reuters that Chinese agenices are using fake accounts to send lots of recruiting messages to business and government workers in the United States in a bid to get them to reveal secrets. Both the United Kingdom and Germany have warned about the use of similar tactics in the past but this is the first time that the U.S. is talking about this.
The scale at which this campaign is being run hasn’t been divulged and neither has the number of fake accounts being used. Evanina didn’t even say just how successful this effort has been. He did call on LinkedIn to significantly purge accounts involved in such activities like Twitter has done recently.
LinkedIn’s trust and safety lead Paul Rockwell has responded by saying that less than 40 fake accounts being used for political recruitment drives have been removed, dispelling the notion that LinkedIn has not been doing anything about this. Rockwell also said that the team is doing everything it can to stop this from happening.
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