The developments related to the Bloomberg Businessweek in which the magazine claimed that Apple, Amazon and others were spied on by the Chinese government (thanks to an alleged microchip installed on the servers they use) continue.
We hereby inform you that the United Kingdom's National Cyber Security Center (United Kingdoms National Cyber Security Center) which is part of the Government's Communications Headquarters (Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ) demonstrated full support from Apple and Amazon, saying it had no reason to doubt the detailed assessments made by the companies. Now, it was time for Bruce Sewell, former legal director of Apple, to speak out.
Sewell recently retired, but was ahead of Apple at the time of the episode reported by Bloomberg. In a conversation with Reuters, he claimed to have called FBI legal director James Baker last year after he was informed by Bloomberg about an open investigation into Super Micro (a company that would have implanted the microchips on servers) and was told that no one at the federal agency knew the story.
I spoke to him on the phone in person and said, "Do you know anything about this?", And he said, "I never heard of it, but give me 24 hours to be sure." He called me back 24 hours later and said, "No one here knows what this story is."
Sewell's comment matches the information in Apple's press release, specifically in this excerpt: "We are not aware of any FBI investigation, and so are our contacts in the public security bodies."
According to Bloomberg Businessweek (about 17), after identifying the malicious microchips in 2015, Apple started removing all Super Micro servers from its data centers. Each of Super Micro's 7,000 or more servers was replaced in a matter of weeks, according to vehicle information.
The reason for the alleged espionage, as we said, was to have access to high-value corporate secrets and delicate government networks, since some US government agencies also used Super Micro servers.
For now, we are following an affirmation story (from Bloomberg) and denial (from Apple, Amazon and Super Micro). Until everything is properly clarified if it is, a lot of water will still flow. Let us follow the next chapters of this story that brings us back to the Cold War.