From Russia with Love

Only weeks after blasting the United States for spying on its own citizens and on other nations through the NSA, Vladimir Putin, President of Russia, was caught trying to secretly collect information on foreign countries at the recent G20 summit in St. Petersburg. Putin and other Russian officials were giving out gift bags with phone chargers and USB drives to attendees from various nations.  However, inside Russia’s outward gesture of goodwill to its allies was a dirty little secret.

Vladimir Putin in 2008. By Kremlin.

Upon examining the gifts, Germany’s secret service discovered a so-called “trojan horse” malware capable of sending information back to the Kremlin, according to The New York Post. How Putin thought that free mobile phone chargers and USB drives from Russia, of all countries, would not arouse any suspicion is beyond me. All this goes to show is that most countries probably have a spying program akin to that of the United States, making their previous anger over the NSA’s privacy violations false and hypocritical. Furthermore, this makes Russia’s grant of asylum to Edward Snowden even that much more cold-blooded. Obviously, tensions from the Cold War have barely subsided, with both the U.S. and Russia still taking every opportunity possible to maintain an advantage over each other. In review, Russia simply got caught in the act of doing what every other country is probably doing too: spying on its neighbors.


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