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Switzerland increasingly targeted by spies: report

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Switzerland increasingly targeted by spies: report
Cyber crime is on the rise. Photo: cybercrime.admin.ch
13:46 CEST+02:00
Cyber attacks and abductions of Swiss abroad were two of the main security challenges faced by Switzerland last year, according to a government report.

Illegal intelligence continues to be practised in Switzerland, with IT resources being increasingly used for that purpose, the Federal Intelligence Service (FIS) said on Tuesday.

The FIS Situation Report 2013 said the authorities in different countries were to a greater or lesser extent involved in illegal intelligence gathering, Le Matin reported.

The aim was principally surveillance of the political opposition abroad.

But spies were also interested in Swiss research, the financial centre and international organisations.

The security report stressed that Switzerland was currently “in a quiet and stable situation” and no threats were imminent.

“Switzerland continues to be no priority for jihadist motivated attacks,” it said.

However, presenting the report, FIS head Markus Seiler said an Islamist attack on Swiss soil could not be ruled out.

And Swiss nationals abroad were “more threatened than in the past by politically and terrorist motivated abductions”, the report said.

This was particularly the case in combat zones in the Islamic world.

The report said several people resident in Switzerland had last year visited jihadist regions in Somalia, Afghanistan and Pakistan to take part in fighting there.

In terms of internal security, right and left-wing extremism continued to have “violence potential” without posing a major threat.

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