In my recent study at Penn State University, I analyzed 274 cases of Chinese espionage. Several high-level conclusions can be drawn from those cases, which represent the last 20 years of Chinese espionage operations. Among the most important conclusions are the impacts on various components of U.S. national security.
China’s espionage operations have expanded dramatically, increasing in the number of operations, personnel, government, and state-owned enterprises, and foreign targets. There is also a national construct in place (however redundant) to ensure intelligence information objectives are satisfied by collecting foreign information and technology. These information objectives are tied to national defense and economic priorities. The only notable area in which China has shown minimal advancement has been in applying sophisticated espionage tradecraft. Lastly, China’s espionage activities continue unabated despite a large number of arrests, public exposure, and most recently, U.S. trade sanctions.
Impact of Chinese Espionage on the United States