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Aussie Olympians Warned To Buy Burner Phones For Beijing

As we reported this morning, all athletes planning to compete at the Beijing Winter Olympics next month are required to install a very security-lax app that could well see their private information mined by anyone using a Wi-Fi hotspot.

On top of that, Australian athletes have specifically been told it is best to completely leave their smartphones at home, and to set up a new email account, unlinked to any of their accounts, to avoid having their info stolen by the Chinese government.

“All athletes and visitors to China for the Olympics will be exposed to such laws and surveillance culture,” said Canberra-based cybersecurity company Internet 2.0 in a white paper released on Tuesday.

The company recommends they buy a burner phone to be used only in China, and discarded after, and to set up new browser accounts and emails.

The Australian Olympic Committee is also concerned.

“The AOC is providing athletes with advice on minimising risk,” a spokesman said.

“As at previous Games, the IOC provides the athletes with a complimentary phone and SIM card, while the AOC provides HQ staff with a local SIM.

“AOC support staff and officials will also have access to an AOC-established Wi-Fi in areas allocated to us, which is being provided by our IT branch.”

Not surprisingly, the Beijing Olympic Committee says such measures are unnecessary.


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