Bernard Barbier, a former head of the French signals intelligence service, shared a few stories with students of CentraleSupélec, the elite engineering school from which he graduated in 1976, at a symposium this summer.
There was that time he caught the U.S. National Security Agency delving into computers at the Elysée Palace, residence of the French president, for example. And flew to Washington to tell them they’d been found out. Or when the Canadians said they — and the Iranians, the Spaniards, the Algerians and a few others — had all been hacked by a Frenchman, and they were totally right, although the French government denied it.
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