Samsung Korea May Be Responsible For ASML Software Theft
As per latest news, Chinese software organisations were accused of stealing software from ASML, which is one of the world’s biggest manufacturer of computing chips. The Chinese government was also accused of state espionage, although the CEO of ASML, Peter Wennink denied such claims. In an interview aired on Dutch Television on April 16 2019, Peter Wennink revealed that the Chinese government is not the one to be blamed in this scenario, instead, ASML’s biggest Korean customer is responsible for this data theft.
Details Of The Data Theft
There is no doubt that ASML’s “biggest Korean customer” is Samsung. Even though the CEO did not want to call out Samsung by name, he claimed that he discovered the aforementioned information after hiring an external agency to investigate the case of espionage. Upon drawing further conclusions, it was found out that the case is directly related to ordinary business espionage, not state espionage. Ex-Chinese employees have illegally forged the company’s software to develop their own company in order to compete with ASML itself.
The forgery motives weren’t just limited to compete with ASML, rather the minds behind this theft are planning to manufacture cheap knock-offs to Samsung smartphones. Further reports state that the involved spies are of Chinese origin, but currently hold American nationality. The new company developed by the accused employees is called “Xtal”, and it is also set up in the United States.
Samsung’s Relationship With Xtal And ASML
The software was initially required to set up machines that could manufacture chips in optimum amounts as per production requirement. In the year 2016, Samsung claimed a 30% share in the aforementioned organization, Xtal, and consequently, ASML lost a valuable customer for that particular software in the form of Samsung. As of now, Samsung is ASML’s major client, but this may change in the light of any future revelations.