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Sunday, 7 October 2018

Department of Homeland Security Has ‘No Reason to Doubt’ Apple’s Servers Were Compromised

Department of Homeland Security

The Department of Homeland Security has issued a statement on the explosive claims made by Bloomberg Newsweek about Apple, Amazon, and other tech giants using compromised Supermicro servers with Chinese spy chips for their cloud services. The law enforcement agency denies that any such incident ever occurred and says it has “no reason to doubt” the statements made by Apple, Amazon, and others.

It is perhaps the first time that such a key U.S. government agency has issued a statement on such a matter. This shows just how series the accusations made by Bloomberg in their report are. Below is the full statement issued by the Department of Justice:

“The Department of Homeland Security is aware of the media reports of a technology supply chain compromise. Like our partners in the UK, the National Cyber Security Centre, at this time we have no reason to doubt the statements from the companies named in the story. Information and communications technology supply chain security is core to DHS’s cybersecurity mission and we are committed to the security and integrity of the technology on which Americans and others around the world increasingly rely. Just this month – National Cybersecurity Awareness Month – we launched several government-industry initiatives to develop near- and long-term solutions to manage risk posed by the complex challenges of increasingly global supply chains. These initiatives will build on existing partnerships with a wide range of technology companies to strengthen our nation’s collective cybersecurity and risk management efforts.”

Apple has also told the Congress on Sunday that its servers were not compromised in anyway whatsoever. Apple’s Vice President for Information Security Goerge Stathakopoulos in a letter to the Senate and House commerce committees said that Apple made repeated investigations but did not find any evidence whatsoever which support the claims made in the Bloomberg report.

“Apple’s proprietary security tools are continuously scanning for precisely this kind of outbound traffic, as it indicates the existence of malware or other malicious activity. Nothing was ever found,” he wrote in the letter provided to Reuters.

Our Take

So far, Apple and other tech giants have made multiple statements denying the claims of their servers being compromised by Chinese spy chips. Their statements have been backed by the DOJ, the NSA, and other independent security researchers as well. Bloomberg, for its part, has continued to stick to its story, though it has failed to provide any evidence to back it up.

From all this, it does seem like no such incident ever took place and Bloomberg’s report is probably confusing it with another incident that took place.

[Via Reuters. DHS]

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