Spies from Russia and China must be treated as terrorists, according to MI5.
MI5 will warn today that the threat of Russian and Chinese spies must be treated as if it were terrorism.
Over the last five years, foreign agents have attempted to manipulate 10,000 ordinary people. “We must, over time, establish the same public awareness and resilience to state threats as we have done over the years on terrorism,” MI5 Director General Ken McCallum will warn today. “Given half a chance, hostile actors will short-circuit years of diligent British study or investment,” he would warn foreign spies.
Through espionage, cyber attacks, fake news, and meddling in political processes, hostile states are not only targeting governments, public institutions, or identified individuals, according to the UK’s most senior spy.
“You will be of interest – more interest than you may think,” Mr McCallum will tell corporate leaders operating in “certain markets,” professors, and researchers.
Foreign agents have attempted to persuade people via social networking platforms such as LinkedIn.
“We must, over time, establish the same public awareness and resilience to state threats as we have done over the years on terrorism,” the Director General of MI5 will warn today.
“The victims of state espionage in the United Kingdom extend far beyond the government.
“We see the UK’s best institutions and academics having their discoveries stolen or replicated; we see businesses being hollowed out by the loss of a competitive advantage they’ve fought so hard to get.
“If given the chance, unfriendly forces will sabotage years of diligent British study or investment.
“This is a large-scale event. And it has an impact on all of us. Jobs, public services, and the future of the United Kingdom.”
Mr McCallum will warn that the “consequences range from frustration and inconvenience to loss of livelihood and, in the worst-case scenario, death.”
He will explain why the British people is not immune to hostile activity’s tentacles, and he will highlight the widespread dangers of espionage, disruptive cyber-attacks, misinformation, and intervention.
To put it bluntly, if you work in a high-tech company, are involved in cutting-edge scientific research, or export to specific markets, you will be of interest to foreign spies — more than you might imagine.
“You don’t have to be afraid; just be awake.”