Accession Number : ADA632209


Title :   Chinese Cyber Espionage: A Complementary Method to Aid PLA Modernization


Descriptive Note : Master's thesis


Corporate Author : NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA


Personal Author(s) : Ellis, Jamie M


Full Text : https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a632209.pdf


Report Date : Dec 2015


Pagination or Media Count : 161


Abstract : In 2013, Mandiant published a report linking one People's Liberation Army (PLA) unit to the virtual exploitation of 11 modern U.S. military platforms. In the last two decades, Chinese cyber espionage has cultivated a significant reputation in cyberspace for its high-volume, illicit exploitation of defense technology. At the same time, the PLA has also rapidly modernized its naval, fighter jet, and air defense technologies. This thesis examines trends in Chinese cyber espionage, PLA modernization, and PLA acquisitions methods to determine from only open-source information if the categories are related and, if so, the nature of the relationship. Defense reports suggest there is a strong correlation between China's virtual exfiltration of modern U.S. technology and the PLA's rapid advancement; cyber espionage is the principal driver for PLA modernization. This thesis asks: Does cyber espionage really play a central role in PLA modernization, or does it simply complement alternate procurement methods? This thesis draws from case studies of China's overt acquisitions, indigenous research, and physical espionage operations to demonstrate that the majority of the PLA's modernized military platforms were developed from non-cyber acquisition methods. These studies support this thesis s conclusion that cyber espionage is not the critical component driving forward PLA modernization.


Descriptors :   *CHINA , *ESPIONAGE , *MILITARY MODERNIZATION , ACQUISITION , AIR FORCE PERSONNEL , CASE STUDIES , COMPUTER NETWORK SECURITY , CYBERWARFARE , DEFENSE SYSTEMS , HACKING(COMPUTER SECURITY) , MILITARY DOCTRINE , MILITARY FORCES(FOREIGN) , MILITARY STRATEGY , NAVAL PERSONNEL , PATTERNS , TECHNOLOGY ASSESSMENT , THESES


Subject Categories : Government and Political Science
      Computer Systems Management and Standards
      Military Forces and Organizations
      Military Intelligence


Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE