“Primary Criminals” in the Implementation of Intelligence and Foreign Interference in China, Russia and Canada: Parliamentary Report



China and Russia remain the “major criminals” of espionage and foreign intervention that threaten Canada’s sovereignty, a committee that oversees national security and intelligence. It states in its annual report.

“The threat of espionage and foreign intervention is significant and continues to grow. While some states are responsible for conducting such activities in Canada, intelligence agencies still have China and Russia as the main culprit. “It shows that,” reads a report by the National Security and Intelligence Commission of Parliamentarians.

The report, submitted to the House of Commons on April 12, updates the threat facing Canada since its final assessment by the 2018 Commission. It takes into account changes in the national and international security environment, including the challenges posed by the pandemic.

The Commission says the pandemic has given foreign countries a new impetus to carry out espionage activities against Canada’s health and science and technology sector, especially COVID-19 and vaccine research.

The report warns that foreign states are increasingly targeting these sectors using traditional non-intelligence collection methods to “access expertise, data, and organizations.”

“The pandemic has completely mitigated these threats, especially those threatening the Canadian healthcare sector,” the report said.

In the case of China, the Communist regime used its “talent program” and academic exchanges to harness Canada’s expertise, the report said. The Thousand Talents Program, formed in 2018, will allow Canadian Chinese scientists to move their research to China and obtain “hard-earned research and proprietary data” carefully prepared by Canadian companies by the Beijing administration. We encourage you to do so.

Meanwhile, as pointed out by the Communications Security Establishment (CSE), a Canadian cryptocurrency, Russia primarily conducts secret cyber operations to steal proprietary data.

The committee Canadian Knowledge Base-Economy Artificial intelligence, quantum technology, 5G, biopharmacy, etc. are “actively targeted” by foreign states. This situation has also been reported by the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS).

“CSIS’s 2018 public report also characterizes economic espionage as a threat of importance, with serious implications for Canada’s economy, including unemployment, lost tax revenues and a loss of competitive advantage.” The report states.

With regard to foreign interference, the Commission warns that foreign state actors are taking advantage of the openness of Canadian society and trying to invade the country’s basic system to achieve their goals.

“They try to target ethnic and cultural communities, disrupt political processes, manipulate the media, and curate discussions in higher education,” the report said.

“Each of these activities poses significant risks to Canadian rights and freedoms and national sovereignty, and the Commission has concluded that they are a clear threat to Canada’s security.”

The report lists cases of foreign interference by China and Russia using diaspora and compatriot groups, but details have been edited.

Cyber ‚Äč‚Äčthreat

Another concern identified by the Commission is cyberattacks, with China and Russia being “actors sponsored by the most sophisticated countries targeting the Canadian government system.”

In the light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Commission is targeting the health sector from the CSE for state-sponsored actors to obtain information related to vaccine R & D, medical devices and response coordination, threatening. I heard that it is likely to continue. The whole pandemic.

Some of the most relevant cyber threats to national security and intelligence include: Critical infrastructure network breach. Online foreign influence campaign with social media and coordinated manipulation of opinions. Track and monitor dissidents and individuals’ cyber responses. “

According to the report, China is using cyber capabilities to espionage the Government of Canada and its allies, businesses, and academic institutions around the world to collect commercial, diplomatic, and military intelligence. Russia has similarly adopted advanced cyber-spy activities to achieve that goal.

The report also states that China, Russia and Iran have indicated their intention to build cyber-attack capabilities against industrial control systems linked to critical infrastructure. If this succeeds, hospitals, medical networks, electricity, energy, transportation, food distribution systems.

“Canada and its closest security and intelligence partners report on cyberattacks and network breaches in energy utilities, banks, telecommunications and communications infrastructure, and networks of cloud-based service providers,” the report said. ..

Regarding foreign influences online, the CSE has found that cyber threat actors carry out disinformation campaigns, disagree and undermine public confidence in government agencies. One case relates to a Russian troll farm tweeting about a hot event in Canada, such as the January 2017 shooting of a mosque in Quebec City and the increase in border crossings for asylum seekers that year. It was related to a Twitter account.

The Commission also noted that state-sponsored actors have developed advanced technology to target political opponents and dissidents through eavesdropping, geopositioning, or changing the content of targeted users’ mobile devices. ..

Nuclear threat

According to the report, nuclear-weapon states continue to modernize their weapons systems. For example, China remains at the forefront of ballistic missile testing and development, discovered by the Ministry of Defense and the Canadian Armed Forces (DND / CAF). Similarly, Russia, North Korea and Iran are conducting missile tests.

“The threat to Canada from the use of nuclear weapons is limited to Russia and China. Russia and China may consider attacking Canadian targets during a nuclear war with the United States. DND / CAF Evaluates that while both countries continue to modernize their nuclear weapons, their key strategic goals are still blocking major conventional or nuclear attacks. “

The Commission also found that the threat of terrorism against Canada has changed since its last assessment in 2018. This suggests that the threat of Islamic terrorist groups such as ISIS is diminishing and that other ideologically motivated violent extremist groups are increasing.

Use Canadian Press files

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