Senate Panel Seeks FBI Briefing on Super Micro Hacking Report

(Bloomberg) -- A U.S. Senate committee asked the FBI and Department of Homeland Security for a classified briefing on a report saying China’s intelligence services used subcontractors to plant malicious chips in Super Micro Computer Inc. server motherboards.

The Homeland Security panel asked for officials to appear before the panel by Oct. 25 in response to a Bloomberg Businessweek report. The agencies are processing the request and the panel hasn’t yet been briefed, according to a committee spokesman.

“To fully understand the accuracy of public reports about the potential cybersecurity and supply chain threat, we respectfully request that DHS and FBI provide a classified briefing with the appropriate subject-matter expert,” according to an Oct. 16 letter from the panel’s chairman, Republican Ron Johnson of Wisconsin and top Democrat, Claire McCaskill of Missouri.

In Bloomberg Businessweek’s report, one unnamed official said investigators found that the Chinese infiltration through Supermicro reached almost 30 companies. Inc. and Apple Inc. were among those companies, people with knowledge of the matter said. Supermicro and both Amazon and Apple disputed the report. The Department of Homeland Security said it has “no reason to doubt” the companies’ denials of Bloomberg Businessweek’s reporting.

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