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Sex Works
by James Dunnigan
March 1, 2009

China continues to use "honey trap" (sex scandal) operations with great success. It was recently revealed that four Taiwanese government officials were lured to a Chinese red light district, and covertly captured on video doing something they could be blackmailed (into spying for China) for.

The Chinese, and the Russians, have been doing this sort of thing for years. It sometimes backfires. This happened three years ago, when a blackmail demand was made to the head of the encrypted communications section of the Japan's Shanghai consulate. The man was being pressured by Chinese agents to hand over sensitive intelligence, or be exposed for sexual activities the Chinese lured him into (a "honey trap"). The Japanese diplomat committed suicide instead, while also alerting his superiors. Having the victim kill himself, instead of cooperating, is always a risk when running a honey trap.

The Taiwanese used their recent honey trap experience as a warning to all other Taiwanese officials who travel to China. Sometimes the Chinese attempt to use the honey trap in foreign countries, but this is more dangerous. If the local police find out, the Chinese can lose some valuable agents, and get some of their diplomats expelled as well. But overall, the Chinese have been quite successful with honey traps, and continue to use them. So do the Russians, and many other countries.


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