FBI Director Christopher Wray said that the FBI found pervasive economic espionage in all 50 states that trace back to Chinese activity. They are the biggest threat to U.S. through economic dominance, he told the audience during an interview with NBC’s Lester Holt at the Aspen Ideas Forum, .
“From a counter-intelligence perspective, China represents the broadest and most challenging threat we face as a country,” Wray said. “It is a whole state effort.”
“It covers everything from corn seeds in Iowa to wind turbines in Massachusetts and everything in between,” said Wray.
According to Wray, the U.S. should not minimize China’s influence through cyber intelligence and traditional espionage tactics.
“The volume of it, the pervasiveness of it, the significance of it is something this country cannot underestimate,” the FBI head said.
As for the militant nation to China’s east, Wray warned their cyber threats are just as significant. They only serve to generate revenue for Kim Jong Un’s cash-strapped regime.
“I do think their tactics are more sophisticated than people appreciated several years ago,” Wray added.
He agreed that Russia is a significant threat that must be dealt with “aggressively”. Wray warned that Russia “continues to engage in malign influence operations to this day”.