- Dec 9, 2008
- Reaction score
- Ponca City Ok
Years ago I worked for the Pelton Company in the late 70's, that built the electronics for vibrasize oil exploration trucks. The trucks were built across the street at the Mertz company. We built the circuit boards from scratch doing all the soldering for each unit that went out the door.From the article (emphasis added):
Over the decades, the security of the supply chain became an article of faith despite repeated warnings by Western officials. A belief formed that China was unlikely to jeopardize its position as workshop to the world by letting its spies meddle in its factories. That left the decision about where to build commercial systems resting largely on where capacity was greatest and cheapest. “You end up with a classic Satan’s bargain,” one former U.S. official says. “You can have less supply than you want and guarantee it’s secure, or you can have the supply you need, but there will be risk. Every organization has accepted the second proposition.”
So...yes, people suspected. Senior management just decided the profits were worth the risk.
Now, it's time for the market to speak to such management. Or not, depending upon its priorities.
(Also, anybody who thinks other intelligence agencies, including the NSA, aren't doing similar things is an idiot. But that's another thread, another time, unlikely to make mainstream US press.)
When China bought 90 trucks, we had to build 90 sets of the vibrator control units plus spares. China sent their "technicians" and "truck drivers" to do a final runout of the trucks and get training on how to use the electronics.
When they came in to the assembly lab on a tour, we had old model 1 design failure modules scattered about on tables and were soldering in components, to make it look like we were working.
Every one of them produced a camera and started taking snapshots non stop.
What they didn't know is that the circuit boards after assemble were required to be "potted" with black epoxy and encapsulated in metal containers.
A team of us spent weeks trying to dig the epoxy out the containers and get to the components on the circuit boards. Used chemicals, knives, whatever, and were never able to deconstruct one of the modules without destroying it in the process.
China's intellectual thievery has been going on for a long time.