Security Clearance Denial

Former Boeing Engineer Gets 15 Years For China Spying

Did you ever bring 300,000 pages of sensitive (i.e. aerospace and defense technologies) documents home to write a book without informing anyone, including your company? Me neither.  A former Boeing engineer says that’s all he was doing.  He was sentenced to more than 15 years in prison earlier this week.   He was convicted of six counts of economic espionage that was said to have spanned 30 years.

The AP reports:

The government accused Dongfan “Greg” Chung, a stress analyst with high-level clearance, of using his 30-year career at Boeing and Rockwell International to steal the documents. They said investigators found papers stacked throughout Chung’s house that included sensitive information about a booster rocket fueling system — documents that employees were ordered to lock away at the end of each day. They said Boeing invested $50 million in the technology over a five-year period.

In his ruling, Carney [the judge] wrote that the notion that Chung was merely a pack rat was “ludicrous” and said the evidence showed that he had been passing information to Chinese officials as a spy.

Chung worked for Rockwell until it was bought by Boeing in 1996. He stayed with the company until he was laid off in 2002, then was brought back a year later as a consultant. He was fired when the FBI began its investigation in 2006.

To no ones surprise, China has denied any involvement.   It’s worth noting that this case came about while investigators were looking into another suspected Chinese spy.

Of course, this is just one way to spy – another, bigger,  growing problem exists.

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    This is just another example of why resumes must be screened, background checks constantly run and high quality individuals must be hired for such positions.

    There are a number of people with security clearance jobs that are there for a reason…maybe Boeing needs to reconsider their policies on who has access to what. Or they at least need to beef up their security measures.

    -J. Alexander