Things aren’t going well for Chinese espionage units these days, another spy was uncloaked by the feds, this time, a Zoom employee based in China. He has been fired and the virtual meeting company “suspended several others” while they do an internal investigation.
Chinese spy targeted U.S. dissidents
According to reports, Zoom employee Xinjiang Jin, based in mainland China, was “spying on Chinese dissidents in the U.S. and shutting down virtual meetings around the world for violating Chinese law.” Federal prosecutors with the Department of Justice charged the spy with “conspiracy to commit interstate harassment and unlawful conspiracy to transfer a means of identification.”
Arresting him will be up to the Chinese. Using his post as “security technical leader,” Jin passed along “information on certain Zoom meetings and users to the Chinese state and fabricate violations of Zoom’s terms of service to shut down meetings.”
The People’s Republic of China made a bargain with the devil. “The allegations in the complaint lay bare the Faustian bargain that the PRC government demands of U.S. technology companies doing business within the PRC’s borders.”
If you plan to work in China, expect a spy in your company. Jin “worked closely with the PRC government and members of PRC intelligence services.” His job was to “silence the political and religious speech of users of the platform.”
Mr. Jin totally enjoyed his work and “willingly committed crimes.” He “sought to mislead others at the company, to help PRC authorities censor and punish U.S. users’ core political speech merely for exercising their rights to free expression.”
The federal indictment didn’t name Zoom directly but the company volunteered the information about details of the spy scandal to the public.
A ‘liaison’ with the government
Zoom took a hard look at their methods and “ceased the sale of direct and online services in China.” They also moved their engineering hubs to the United States, India, and Singapore.
The spy was originally hired, they explain, “to serve as a liaison between the company and the Chinese government after Beijing shut off the company’s service in China in September 2019.” The Chinese Communist Party made them stick to a “rectification plan” so they could resume service in China.
Jin was the man in the middle between Zoom and the CCP. He “used that access to shut down Zoom meetings that broke Chinese law, which bans any speech critical of the Chinese government or the CCP.” Worse, the spy “fabricated evidence against Chinese dissidents hosting meetings commemorating the 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre.”
Jin illegally “collected information on the hosts, including their names and IP addresses.” After that, “he had agents infiltrate the meetings, then accuse the hosts of using the platform to support terrorist organizations, [incite] violence or [distribute] child pornography.”
Without any basis in reality, the spy created fake evidence and made out sworn statements accusing the targets of holding meetings which talked about “child abuse or exploitation, terrorism, racism or incitements to violence.”
He would provide screenshots of what he alleged were the participants’ user profiles, for instance, “a masked person holding a flag resembling that of the Islamic State terrorist group.” Based on that, executives based in the United States would “terminate meetings and suspend or terminate the user accounts of the meeting hosts.”