Analysis: Europeans Shouldn't Be Surprised the U.S. Has Been Spying on Them

Markus Pfaff/Shutterstock.com file photo

European officials are even more shocked and outraged today than they were yesterday at the revelations in Der Spiegel that the US government has been spying on the EU’s offices in Washington and New York. “These are disturbing news if proven true. They demand full clarification,” the EU said in a terse statement today. French president François Hollande said that the revelations might threaten a big round of trade talks scheduled for next week in Washington. “We aren’t in the Cold War anymore,” said Steffen Seibert, chief spokesman for German chancellor Angela Merkel, at a news conference in Berlin.

But while America’s European allies may be shocked, they can’t be surprised. Anyone familiar with the spy-versus-spy games in global diplomatic hubs knows that everyone has been spying on each other for decades.

Some offices at the UN are probably being bugged by more than a dozen foreign governments, according to a former head of FBI counter-intelligence. He says governments are spying on each other so much in Washington and at the UN that it’s surprising their spooks and technicians don’t bump into each other more. At any given time, the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division is investigating dozens of potential breaches of security.

Read more at Quartz.

(Image via Markus Pfaff/Shutterstock.com)

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Federal IT Applications: Assessing Government's Core Drivers

    In order to better understand the current state of external and internal-facing agency workplace applications, Government Business Council (GBC) and Riverbed undertook an in-depth research study of federal employees. Overall, survey findings indicate that federal IT applications still face a gamut of challenges with regard to quality, reliability, and performance management.

    Download
  • PIV- I And Multifactor Authentication: The Best Defense for Federal Government Contractors

    This white paper explores NIST SP 800-171 and why compliance is critical to federal government contractors, especially those that work with the Department of Defense, as well as how leveraging PIV-I credentialing with multifactor authentication can be used as a defense against cyberattacks

    Download
  • Toward A More Innovative Government

    This research study aims to understand how state and local leaders regard their agency’s innovation efforts and what they are doing to overcome the challenges they face in successfully implementing these efforts.

    Download
  • From Volume to Value: UK’s NHS Digital Provides U.S. Healthcare Agencies A Roadmap For Value-Based Payment Models

    The U.S. healthcare industry is rapidly moving away from traditional fee-for-service models and towards value-based purchasing that reimburses physicians for quality of care in place of frequency of care.

    Download
  • GBC Flash Poll: Is Your Agency Safe?

    Federal leaders weigh in on the state of information security

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.