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WSJ: Eric Schmidt calls China 'the most sophisticated and prolific' hacker of foreign firms

Alexis Santos
February 2, 2013
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The Wall Street Journal snagged a preview of an upcoming book co-authored by Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt and the company's Jared Cohen, and it doesn't seem to paint the rosiest picture of China. Dubbed The New Digital Age, the tome reportedly claims China is "the world's most active and enthusiastic filterer of information" in addition to "the most sophisticated and prolific" hacker of foreign firms. Recent stats and events don't exactly help the nation's image.

In addition to the threat of hacking attempts originating from China, the work also touches upon the Chinese government's alleged involvement with network infrastructure providers such as Huawei. According to the book, such cooperation puts the US at an economic and political disadvantage since "the United States will not take the same path of digital corporate espionage, as its laws are much stricter (and better enforced) and because illicit competition violates the American sense of fair play." However, Schmidt and Cohen posit that even western firms "will coordinate their efforts with their governments on both diplomatic and technical levels" as the future unfolds.

In terms of what's to come, the work also considers that the country's "mix of active citizens armed with technological devices and tight government control is exceptionally volatile," and that it could cause "widespread instability," and even "some kind of revolution in the coming decades." If you're interested in more prognostication from Google's head honcho, the book is slated to hit shelves this April. For now, you can hit the neighboring source link for additional morsels.

[Image credit: TechCrunch, Flickr]

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