All posts by Bruce Schneier

Other Attempts to Take Over Open Source Projects

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/other-attempts-to-take-over-open-source-projects.html

After the XZ Utils discovery, people have been examining other open-source projects. Surprising no one, the incident is not unique:

The OpenJS Foundation Cross Project Council received a suspicious series of emails with similar messages, bearing different names and overlapping GitHub-associated emails. These emails implored OpenJS to take action to update one of its popular JavaScript projects to “address any critical vulnerabilities,” yet cited no specifics. The email author(s) wanted OpenJS to designate them as a new maintainer of the project despite having little prior involvement. This approach bears strong resemblance to the manner in which “Jia Tan” positioned themselves in the XZ/liblzma backdoor.

[…]

The OpenJS team also recognized a similar suspicious pattern in two other popular JavaScript projects not hosted by its Foundation, and immediately flagged the potential security concerns to respective OpenJS leaders, and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) within the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

The article includes a list of suspicious patterns, and another list of security best practices.

Using AI-Generated Legislative Amendments as a Delaying Technique

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/using-ai-generated-legislative-amendments-as-a-delaying-technique.html

Canadian legislators proposed 19,600 amendments—almost certainly AI-generated—to a bill in an attempt to delay its adoption.

I wrote about many different legislative delaying tactics in A Hacker’s Mind, but this is a new one.

X.com Automatically Changing Link Text but Not URLs

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/x-com-automatically-changing-link-names-but-not-links.html

Brian Krebs reported that X (formerly known as Twitter) started automatically changing twitter.com links to x.com links. The problem is: (1) it changed any domain name that ended with “twitter.com,” and (2) it only changed the link’s appearance (anchortext), not the underlying URL. So if you were a clever phisher and registered fedetwitter.com, people would see the link as fedex.com, but it would send people to fedetwitter.com.

Thankfully, the problem has been fixed.

New Lattice Cryptanalytic Technique

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/new-lattice-cryptanalytic-technique.html

A new paper presents a polynomial-time quantum algorithm for solving certain hard lattice problems. This could be a big deal for post-quantum cryptographic algorithms, since many of them base their security on hard lattice problems.

A few things to note. One, this paper has not yet been peer reviewed. As this comment points out: “We had already some cases where efficient quantum algorithms for lattice problems were discovered, but they turned out not being correct or only worked for simple special cases.”

Two, this is a quantum algorithm, which means that it has not been tested. There is a wide gulf between quantum algorithms in theory and in practice. And until we can actually code and test these algorithms, we should be suspicious of their speed and complexity claims.

And three, I am not surprised at all. We don’t have nearly enough analysis of lattice-based cryptosystems to be confident in their security.

Upcoming Speaking Engagements

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/upcoming-speaking-engagements-35.html

This is a current list of where and when I am scheduled to speak:

  • I’m speaking twice at RSA Conference 2024 in San Francisco. I’ll be on a panel on software liability on May 6, 2024 at 8:30 AM, and I’m giving a keynote on AI and democracy on May 7, 2024 at 2:25 PM.

The list is maintained on this page.

Backdoor in XZ Utils That Almost Happened

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/backdoor-in-xz-utils-that-almost-happened.html

Last week, the Internet dodged a major nation-state attack that would have had catastrophic cybersecurity repercussions worldwide. It’s a catastrophe that didn’t happen, so it won’t get much attention—but it should. There’s an important moral to the story of the attack and its discovery: The security of the global Internet depends on countless obscure pieces of software written and maintained by even more obscure unpaid, distractible, and sometimes vulnerable volunteers. It’s an untenable situation, and one that is being exploited by malicious actors. Yet precious little is being done to remedy it.

Programmers dislike doing extra work. If they can find already-written code that does what they want, they’re going to use it rather than recreate the functionality. These code repositories, called libraries, are hosted on sites like GitHub. There are libraries for everything: displaying objects in 3D, spell-checking, performing complex mathematics, managing an e-commerce shopping cart, moving files around the Internet—everything. Libraries are essential to modern programming; they’re the building blocks of complex software. The modularity they provide makes software projects tractable. Everything you use contains dozens of these libraries: some commercial, some open source and freely available. They are essential to the functionality of the finished software. And to its security.

You’ve likely never heard of an open-source library called XZ Utils, but it’s on hundreds of millions of computers. It’s probably on yours. It’s certainly in whatever corporate or organizational network you use. It’s a freely available library that does data compression. It’s important, in the same way that hundreds of other similar obscure libraries are important.

Many open-source libraries, like XZ Utils, are maintained by volunteers. In the case of XZ Utils, it’s one person, named Lasse Collin. He has been in charge of XZ Utils since he wrote it in 2009. And, at least in 2022, he’s had some “longterm mental health issues.” (To be clear, he is not to blame in this story. This is a systems problem.)

Beginning in at least 2021, Collin was personally targeted. We don’t know by whom, but we have account names: Jia Tan, Jigar Kumar, Dennis Ens. They’re not real names. They pressured Collin to transfer control over XZ Utils. In early 2023, they succeeded. Tan spent the year slowly incorporating a backdoor into XZ Utils: disabling systems that might discover his actions, laying the groundwork, and finally adding the complete backdoor earlier this year. On March 25, Hans Jansen—another fake name—tried to push the various Unix systems to upgrade to the new version of XZ Utils.

And everyone was poised to do so. It’s a routine update. In the span of a few weeks, it would have been part of both Debian and Red Hat Linux, which run on the vast majority of servers on the Internet. But on March 29, another unpaid volunteer, Andres Freund—a real person who works for Microsoft but who was doing this in his spare time—noticed something weird about how much processing the new version of XZ Utils was doing. It’s the sort of thing that could be easily overlooked, and even more easily ignored. But for whatever reason, Freund tracked down the weirdness and discovered the backdoor.

It’s a masterful piece of work. It affects the SSH remote login protocol, basically by adding a hidden piece of functionality that requires a specific key to enable. Someone with that key can use the backdoored SSH to upload and execute an arbitrary piece of code on the target machine. SSH runs as root, so that code could have done anything. Let your imagination run wild.

This isn’t something a hacker just whips up. This backdoor is the result of a years-long engineering effort. The ways the code evades detection in source form, how it lies dormant and undetectable until activated, and its immense power and flexibility give credence to the widely held assumption that a major nation-state is behind this.

If it hadn’t been discovered, it probably would have eventually ended up on every computer and server on the Internet. Though it’s unclear whether the backdoor would have affected Windows and macOS, it would have worked on Linux. Remember in 2020, when Russia planted a backdoor into SolarWinds that affected 14,000 networks? That seemed like a lot, but this would have been orders of magnitude more damaging. And again, the catastrophe was averted only because a volunteer stumbled on it. And it was possible in the first place only because the first unpaid volunteer, someone who turned out to be a national security single point of failure, was personally targeted and exploited by a foreign actor.

This is no way to run critical national infrastructure. And yet, here we are. This was an attack on our software supply chain. This attack subverted software dependencies. The SolarWinds attack targeted the update process. Other attacks target system design, development, and deployment. Such attacks are becoming increasingly common and effective, and also are increasingly the weapon of choice of nation-states.

It’s impossible to count how many of these single points of failure are in our computer systems. And there’s no way to know how many of the unpaid and unappreciated maintainers of critical software libraries are vulnerable to pressure. (Again, don’t blame them. Blame the industry that is happy to exploit their unpaid labor.) Or how many more have accidentally created exploitable vulnerabilities. How many other coercion attempts are ongoing? A dozen? A hundred? It seems impossible that the XZ Utils operation was a unique instance.

Solutions are hard. Banning open source won’t work; it’s precisely because XZ Utils is open source that an engineer discovered the problem in time. Banning software libraries won’t work, either; modern software can’t function without them. For years, security engineers have been pushing something called a “software bill of materials”: an ingredients list of sorts so that when one of these packages is compromised, network owners at least know if they’re vulnerable. The industry hates this idea and has been fighting it for years, but perhaps the tide is turning.

The fundamental problem is that tech companies dislike spending extra money even more than programmers dislike doing extra work. If there’s free software out there, they are going to use it—and they’re not going to do much in-house security testing. Easier software development equals lower costs equals more profits. The market economy rewards this sort of insecurity.

We need some sustainable ways to fund open-source projects that become de facto critical infrastructure. Public shaming can help here. The Open Source Security Foundation (OSSF), founded in 2022 after another critical vulnerability in an open-source library—Log4j—was discovered, addresses this problem. The big tech companies pledged $30 million in funding after the critical Log4j supply chain vulnerability, but they never delivered. And they are still happy to make use of all this free labor and free resources, as a recent Microsoft anecdote indicates. The companies benefiting from these freely available libraries need to actually step up, and the government can force them to.

There’s a lot of tech that could be applied to this problem, if corporations were willing to spend the money. Liabilities will help. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency’s (CISA’s) “secure by design” initiative will help, and CISA is finally partnering with OSSF on this problem. Certainly the security of these libraries needs to be part of any broad government cybersecurity initiative.

We got extraordinarily lucky this time, but maybe we can learn from the catastrophe that didn’t happen. Like the power grid, communications network, and transportation systems, the software supply chain is critical infrastructure, part of national security, and vulnerable to foreign attack. The US government needs to recognize this as a national security problem and start treating it as such.

This essay originally appeared in Lawfare.

In Memoriam: Ross Anderson, 1956–2024

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/in-memoriam-ross-anderson-1956-2024.html

Last week, I posted a short memorial of Ross Anderson. The Communications of the ACM asked me to expand it. Here’s the longer version.

EDITED TO ADD (4/11): Two weeks before he passed away, Ross gave an 80-minute interview where he told his life story.

US Cyber Safety Review Board on the 2023 Microsoft Exchange Hack

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/us-cyber-safety-review-board-on-the-2023-microsoft-exchange-hack.html

The US Cyber Safety Review Board released a report on the summer 2023 hack of Microsoft Exchange by China. It was a serious attack by the Chinese government that accessed the emails of senior US government officials.

From the executive summary:

The Board finds that this intrusion was preventable and should never have occurred. The Board also concludes that Microsoft’s security culture was inadequate and requires an overhaul, particularly in light of the company’s centrality in the technology ecosystem and the level of trust customers place in the company to protect their data and operations. The Board reaches this conclusion based on:

  1. the cascade of Microsoft’s avoidable errors that allowed this intrusion to succeed;
  2. Microsoft’s failure to detect the compromise of its cryptographic crown jewels on its own, relying instead on a customer to reach out to identify anomalies the customer had observed;
  3. the Board’s assessment of security practices at other cloud service providers, which maintained security controls that Microsoft did not;
  4. Microsoft’s failure to detect a compromise of an employee’s laptop from a recently acquired company prior to allowing it to connect to Microsoft’s corporate network in 2021;
  5. Microsoft’s decision not to correct, in a timely manner, its inaccurate public statements about this incident, including a corporate statement that Microsoft believed it had determined the likely root cause of the intrusion when in fact, it still has not; even though Microsoft acknowledged to the Board in November 2023 that its September 6, 2023 blog post about the root cause was inaccurate, it did not update that post until March 12, 2024, as the Board was concluding its review and only after the Board’s repeated questioning about Microsoft’s plans to issue a correction;
  6. the Board’s observation of a separate incident, disclosed by Microsoft in January 2024, the investigation of which was not in the purview of the Board’s review, which revealed a compromise that allowed a different nation-state actor to access highly-sensitive Microsoft corporate email accounts, source code repositories, and internal systems; and
  7. how Microsoft’s ubiquitous and critical products, which underpin essential services that support national security, the foundations of our economy, and public health and safety, require the company to demonstrate the highest standards of security, accountability, and transparency.

The report includes a bunch of recommendations. It’s worth reading in its entirety.

The board was established in early 2022, modeled in spirit after the National Transportation Safety Board. This is their third report.

Here are a few news articles.

EDITED TO ADD (4/15): Adam Shostack has some good commentary.

Security Vulnerability of HTML Emails

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/security-vulnerability-of-html-emails.html

This is a newly discovered email vulnerability:

The email your manager received and forwarded to you was something completely innocent, such as a potential customer asking a few questions. All that email was supposed to achieve was being forwarded to you. However, the moment the email appeared in your inbox, it changed. The innocent pretext disappeared and the real phishing email became visible. A phishing email you had to trust because you knew the sender and they even confirmed that they had forwarded it to you.

This attack is possible because most email clients allow CSS to be used to style HTML emails. When an email is forwarded, the position of the original email in the DOM usually changes, allowing for CSS rules to be selectively applied only when an email has been forwarded.

An attacker can use this to include elements in the email that appear or disappear depending on the context in which the email is viewed. Because they are usually invisible, only appear in certain circumstances, and can be used for all sorts of mischief, I’ll refer to these elements as kobold letters, after the elusive sprites of mythology.

I can certainly imagine the possibilities.

Maybe the Phone System Surveillance Vulnerabilities Will Be Fixed

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/maybe-the-phone-system-surveillance-vulnerabilities-will-be-fixed.html

It seems that the FCC might be fixing the vulnerabilities in SS7 and the Diameter protocol:

On March 27 the commission asked telecommunications providers to weigh in and detail what they are doing to prevent SS7 and Diameter vulnerabilities from being misused to track consumers’ locations.

The FCC has also asked carriers to detail any exploits of the protocols since 2018. The regulator wants to know the date(s) of the incident(s), what happened, which vulnerabilities were exploited and with which techniques, where the location tracking occurred, and ­ if known ­ the attacker’s identity.

This time frame is significant because in 2018, the Communications Security, Reliability, and Interoperability Council (CSRIC), a federal advisory committee to the FCC, issued several security best practices to prevent network intrusions and unauthorized location tracking.

I have written about this over the past decade.

Surveillance by the New Microsoft Outlook App

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/surveillance-by-the-new-microsoft-outlook-app.html

The ProtonMail people are accusing Microsoft’s new Outlook for Windows app of conducting extensive surveillance on its users. It shares data with advertisers, a lot of data:

The window informs users that Microsoft and those 801 third parties use their data for a number of purposes, including to:

  • Store and/or access information on the user’s device
  • Develop and improve products
  • Personalize ads and content
  • Measure ads and content
  • Derive audience insights
  • Obtain precise geolocation data
  • Identify users through device scanning

Commentary.

Class-Action Lawsuit against Google’s Incognito Mode

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/class-action-lawsuit-against-googles-incognito-mode.html

The lawsuit has been settled:

Google has agreed to delete “billions of data records” the company collected while users browsed the web using Incognito mode, according to documents filed in federal court in San Francisco on Monday. The agreement, part of a settlement in a class action lawsuit filed in 2020, caps off years of disclosures about Google’s practices that shed light on how much data the tech giant siphons from its users­—even when they’re in private-browsing mode.

Under the terms of the settlement, Google must further update the Incognito mode “splash page” that appears anytime you open an Incognito mode Chrome window after previously updating it in January. The Incognito splash page will explicitly state that Google collects data from third-party websites “regardless of which browsing or browser mode you use,” and stipulate that “third-party sites and apps that integrate our services may still share information with Google,” among other changes. Details about Google’s private-browsing data collection must also appear in the company’s privacy policy.

I was an expert witness for the prosecution (that’s the class, against Google). I don’t know if my declarations and deposition will become public.

XZ Utils Backdoor

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/xz-utils-backdoor.html

The cybersecurity world got really lucky last week. An intentionally placed backdoor in XZ Utils, an open-source compression utility, was pretty much accidentally discovered by a Microsoft engineer—weeks before it would have been incorporated into both Debian and Red Hat Linux. From ArsTehnica:

Malicious code added to XZ Utils versions 5.6.0 and 5.6.1 modified the way the software functions. The backdoor manipulated sshd, the executable file used to make remote SSH connections. Anyone in possession of a predetermined encryption key could stash any code of their choice in an SSH login certificate, upload it, and execute it on the backdoored device. No one has actually seen code uploaded, so it’s not known what code the attacker planned to run. In theory, the code could allow for just about anything, including stealing encryption keys or installing malware.

It was an incredibly complex backdoor. Installing it was a multi-year process that seems to have involved social engineering the lone unpaid engineer in charge of the utility. More from ArsTechnica:

In 2021, someone with the username JiaT75 made their first known commit to an open source project. In retrospect, the change to the libarchive project is suspicious, because it replaced the safe_fprint function with a variant that has long been recognized as less secure. No one noticed at the time.

The following year, JiaT75 submitted a patch over the XZ Utils mailing list, and, almost immediately, a never-before-seen participant named Jigar Kumar joined the discussion and argued that Lasse Collin, the longtime maintainer of XZ Utils, hadn’t been updating the software often or fast enough. Kumar, with the support of Dennis Ens and several other people who had never had a presence on the list, pressured Collin to bring on an additional developer to maintain the project.

There’s a lot more. The sophistication of both the exploit and the process to get it into the software project scream nation-state operation. It’s reminiscent of Solar Winds, although (1) it would have been much, much worse, and (2) we got really, really lucky.

I simply don’t believe this was the only attempt to slip a backdoor into a critical piece of Internet software, either closed source or open source. Given how lucky we were to detect this one, I believe this kind of operation has been successful in the past. We simply have to stop building our critical national infrastructure on top of random software libraries managed by lone unpaid distracted—or worse—individuals.

Declassified NSA Newsletters

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/04/declassified-nsa-newsletters.html

Through a 2010 FOIA request (yes, it took that long), we have copies of the NSA’s KRYPTOS Society Newsletter, “Tales of the Krypt,” from 1994 to 2003.

There are many interesting things in the 800 pages of newsletter. There are many redactions. And a 1994 review of Applied Cryptography by redacted:

Applied Cryptography, for those who don’t read the internet news, is a book written by Bruce Schneier last year. According to the jacket, Schneier is a data security expert with a master’s degree in computer science. According to his followers, he is a hero who has finally brought together the loose threads of cryptography for the general public to understand. Schneier has gathered academic research, internet gossip, and everything he could find on cryptography into one 600-page jumble.

The book is destined for commercial success because it is the only volume in which everything linked to cryptography is mentioned. It has sections on such-diverse topics as number theory, zero knowledge proofs, complexity, protocols, DES, patent law, and the Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility. Cryptography is a hot topic just now, and Schneier stands alone in having written a book on it which can be browsed: it is not too dry.

Schneier gives prominence to applications with large sections.on protocols and source code. Code is given for IDEA, FEAL, triple-DES, and other algorithms. At first glance, the book has the look of an encyclopedia of cryptography. Unlike an encyclopedia, however, it can’t be trusted for accuracy.

Playing loose with the facts is a serious problem with Schneier. For example in discussing a small-exponent attack on RSA, he says “an attack by Michael Wiener will recover e when e is up to one quarter the size of n.” Actually, Wiener’s attack recovers the secret exponent d when e has less than one quarter as many bits as n, which is a quite different statement. Or: “The quadratic sieve is the fastest known algorithm for factoring numbers less than 150 digits…. The number field sieve is the fastest known factoring algorithm, although the quadratric sieve is still faster for smaller numbers (the break even point is between 110 and 135 digits).” Throughout the book, Schneier leaves the impression of sloppiness, of a quick and dirty exposition. The reader is subjected to the grunge of equations, only to be confused or misled. The large number of errors compounds the problem. A recent version of the errata (Schneier publishes updates on the internet) is fifteen pages and growing, including errors in diagrams, errors in the code, and errors in the bibliography.

Many readers won’t notice that the details are askew. The importance of the book is that it is the first stab at.putting the whole subject in one spot. Schneier aimed to provide a “comprehensive reference work for modern cryptography.” Comprehensive it is. A trusted reference it is not.

Ouch. But I will not argue that some of my math was sloppy, especially in the first edition (with the blue cover, not the red cover).

A few other highlights:

  • 1995 Kryptos Kristmas Kwiz, pages 299–306
  • 1996 Kryptos Kristmas Kwiz, pages 414–420
  • 1998 Kryptos Kristmas Kwiz, pages 659–665
  • 1999 Kryptos Kristmas Kwiz, pages 734–738
  • Dundee Society Introductory Placement Test (from questions posed by Lambros Callimahos in his famous class), pages 771–773
  • R. Dale Shipp’s Principles of Cryptanalytic Diagnosis, pages 776–779
  • Obit of Jacqueline Jenkins-Nye (Bill Nye the Science Guy’s mother), pages 755–756
  • A praise of Pi, pages 694–696
  • A rant about Acronyms, pages 614–615
  • A speech on women in cryptology, pages 593–599

Ross Anderson

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/03/ross-anderson.html

Ross Anderson unexpectedly passed away Thursday night in, I believe, his home in Cambridge.

I can’t remember when I first met Ross. Of course it was before 2008, when we created the Security and Human Behavior workshop. It was well before 2001, when we created the Workshop on Economics and Information Security. (Okay, he created both—I helped.) It was before 1998, when we wrote about the problems with key escrow systems. I was one of the people he brought to the Newton Institute, at Cambridge University, for the six-month cryptography residency program he ran (I mistakenly didn’t stay the whole time)—that was in 1996.

I know I was at the first Fast Software Encryption workshop in December 1993, another conference he created. There I presented the Blowfish encryption algorithm. Pulling an old first-edition of Applied Cryptography (the one with the blue cover) down from the shelf, I see his name in the acknowledgments. Which means that sometime in early 1993—probably at Eurocrypt in Lofthus, Norway—I, as an unpublished book author who had only written a couple of crypto articles for Dr. Dobb’s Journal, asked him to read and comment on my book manuscript. And he said yes. Which means I mailed him a paper copy. And he read it. And mailed his handwritten comments back to me. In an envelope with stamps. Because that’s how we did it back then.

I have known Ross for over thirty years, as both a colleague and a friend. He was enthusiastic, brilliant, opinionated, articulate, curmudgeonly, and kind. Pick up any of his academic papers—there are many—and odds are that you will find a least one unexpected insight. He was a cryptographer and security engineer, but also very much a generalist. He published on block cipher cryptanalysis in the 1990s, and the security of large-language models last year. He started conferences like nobody’s business. His masterwork book, Security Engineering—now in its third edition—is as comprehensive a tome on cybersecurity and related topics as you could imagine. (Also note his fifteen-lecture video series on that same page. If you have never heard Ross lecture, you’re in for a treat.) He was the first person to understand that security problems are often actually economic problems. He was the first person to make a lot of those sorts of connections. He fought against surveillance and backdoors, and for academic freedom. He didn’t suffer fools in either government or the corporate world.

He’s listed in the acknowledgments as a reader of every one of my books from Beyond Fear on. Recently, we’d see each other a couple of times a year: at this or that workshop or event. The last time I saw him was last June, at SHB 2023, in Pittsburgh. We were having dinner on Alessandro Acquisti‘s rooftop patio, celebrating another successful workshop. He was going to attend my Workshop on Reimagining Democracy in December, but he had to cancel at the last minute. (He sent me the talk he was going to give. I will see about posting it.) The day before he died, we were discussing how to accommodate everyone who registered for this year’s SHB workshop. I learned something from him every single time we talked. And I am not the only one.

My heart goes out to his wife Shireen and his family. We lost him much too soon.

EDITED TO ADD (4/10): I wrote a longer version for Communications of the ACM.

Friday Squid Blogging: The Geopolitics of Eating Squid

Post Syndicated from Bruce Schneier original https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2024/03/68676.html

New York Times op-ed on the Chinese dominance of the squid industry:

China’s domination in seafood has raised deep concerns among American fishermen, policymakers and human rights activists. They warn that China is expanding its maritime reach in ways that are putting domestic fishermen around the world at a competitive disadvantage, eroding international law governing sea borders and undermining food security, especially in poorer countries that rely heavily on fish for protein. In some parts of the world, frequent illegal incursions by Chinese ships into other nations’ waters are heightening military tensions. American lawmakers are concerned because the United States, locked in a trade war with China, is the world’s largest importer of seafood.

As usual, you can also use this squid post to talk about the security stories in the news that I haven’t covered.

Read my blog posting guidelines here.