Förderverein Informationstechnik und Gesellschaft

FC: US spy satellites sniff German companies' email,

------- Forwarded Message Follows -------
Date:          Sun, 11 Apr 1999 22:12:50 -0400
From:          Declan McCullagh <>
Subject:       FC: US spy satellites sniff German companies' email, phone calls

Or, another reason why the NSA doesn't want Germans to use strong
crypto. --Declan


Date: Sun, 11 Apr 1999 12:35:36 -0400 (EDT)

   Electronic Telegraph International News
   Sunday 11 April 1999

   US spy satellites 'raiding German firms' secrets'
   By Tony Paterson in Berlin

   SECURITY experts in Germany have uncovered new evidence of a big
   American industrial espionage operation in Europe using satellite
   listening posts in Britain and Germany.

   German business is thought to suffer annual losses of at least 7
   billion through stolen inventions and development projects. With
   Europe already locked in a trade war with its American ally over
   bananas, Germany's high-tech industry wants its government to back
   a counter-offensive.

   The main centres used for satellite tapping of millions of
   confidential company telephone calls, fax and e-mail messages are
   believed to be terrestrial listening posts run by the American
   National Security Agency (NSA) at Menwith Hill, near Harrogate,
   North Yorkshire, and Bad Aibling, Bavaria, with the backing of the
   American government.

   "Industrial espionage is becoming increasingly aggressive. Secrets
   are being siphoned off to an extent never experienced until now,"
   said Horst Teltschik, a senior BMW board member and a former
   security adviser to Helmut Kohl. He is trying to co-ordinate a
   German business response to the spying problem.

   The practice of lifting industrial secrets via satellite listening
   posts has grown steadily in central Europe since the decline in
   political espionage that followed the collapse of communism. But it
   has been further encouraged by advances in communications

   Victims have included such German firms as the wind generator
   manufacturer Enercon. Last year it developed what it thought was a
   secret invention enabling it to generate electricity from wind
   power at a far cheaper rate than before.


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