Let’s Make it the Not So Great Firewall of China

English: Great Wall of China near Jinshanling ...
English: Great Wall of China near Jinshanling Polski: Wielki Mur Chiński w okolicy Jinshanling (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Last evening I attended a really unique meeting of a rather eclectic group.  The topic was published: how do we use cyber to negate the Great Firewall of China?

This was the topic but the tone of the speaker was more ‘we want to punish the Chinese for stealing US Intellectual Property (IP)’.

Dealing strictly with the last four words of the previous sentence: “stealing US IP”, we need to examine if it is true.  The clear answer is yes, the Chinese have been stealing IP from US companies and corporations for years.  Will it stand up in a court of law?  No.  It is extremely difficult to prove, in a court of law, that any company, person or other entity, has personally stolen (meaning copied, using the internet) anything of any value from any US company.  It is so difficult, as a matter of fact, that most consider it impossible.  But there are mountains of what is considered circumstantial evidence showing that US IP is copied and deposited on servers near Beijing, Shanghai and Xi’an.  From there, the trail goes cold.

The first option offered in the meeting last evening was the possibility of action being waged against the Chinese Firewall, it would absolute enrage Chinese Officials.  I sat there, stunned.  I was hearing real seniors from within the US National Security apparatus, stating they wanted to conduct what would be widely considered a cyber war.  Going onto Chinese servers and removing or altering key parts of the Chinese firewall, allowing Chinese citizens to freely access any website in the world would be .

Parts of me said “Yes!  Let’s do this!”   The single most fearful event to the senior Chinese leadership would be unfettered, unblocked, unfiltered, raw information flowing into China.  No more coverups, no more egregious assaults on Chinese citizens, no more Falun Gong suppression, no more abuse of the Dalai Lama.  Just plain talk by Chinese citizens with Chinese citizens, no fear of arrest, torture or anything else.  Just plain talk with the rest of the world.  Disagreements with the Chinese government would be permissible, probably even encouraged, so they could better govern the country.

But then I realized this would be considered an act of war in cyberspace by the Chinese government.  It would threaten the rule of the Chinese government, threatening their ‘State security’, perhaps better labeled their state OF security.  If parts of their national firewall were to suddenly disappear…  chaos might erupt.  Their access to truthful and full information would explode and the people would just…  pop.  There might be rioting in the streets, there might be demonstrations by the people against an oppressive government.  There might be a revolution.

So what can be done?  Three options for those outside China.

1- Punitive. Punishment for all the theft of our Intellectual Property.

2 – Enable all information from inside China to be available to all Chinese, using the internet

3 – Enable all information from outside China to be available to all Chinese, using the internet

Your ideas are being solicited.  How would you do any of the above?



3 thoughts on “Let’s Make it the Not So Great Firewall of China

  1. I once talked to a guy who worked on offshore oil rigs for a multinational. He described one of the jobs he worked on and the Chinese made rig he was on. Interesting thing about it is that it was a replica of one of the rigs his company made. He said, they did a damn good job of replicating it, though they didn’t get it completely right. When I asked him about how they got the plans and still came out wrong, he told me that they got the plans by walking in the front door of the factory and posed as a customer. He was allowed in and they took pictures of everything. Now, I know that isn’t a cyber approach, though I was expecting it to be when I first heard about it, but it is something to remind ourselves about. Not all IP is stolen through cyber means.

    here are some thoughts from the top of my head….

    #1 i like the idea of a swordfish type of response. they take our IP, we shut down their factories, freeze its assets, and take out our compensation for theft and/or we can also manipulate data so that we screw up their production (mess with blueprints and machinery) and their financial books (moving decimals and changing values of integers.) we can also leak other data of the company that stole our IP to one of their competitors, let them feel our pain!

    #2 you know the concept of illegals, listening posts and pirate radio stations, yes? why not set up bots that disseminate collected pieces of information, store and mirror them on various servers in multiple places within and behind the firewalls? how about giving the code different characteristics, appearances, and fortification (with multiple layers of counter patches ready to go when its patched) for camo. How about linking them into outlets that already produce information for mass consumption (websites of all types of media outlets in the comment sections (run articles if possible), social media platforms, and game servers)?

    #3 i like the idea of getting ‘friendly’ with tourists and exchange students? lets teach them about browsing security and places they can go for raw information. things to look for when things are being censored. how about tools that can be easily given to another person once they go back home, so they can use it too. micro sd cards are used in many smart phones, can store a lot of information, and be easily concealed.

    just a couple ideas of the top of my head….

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