Philips gave Turkey compromised communications tech on U.S. orders – report

Netherlands-based technology company Philips cooperated with the CIA to spy on Turkey by deliberately weakening a machine provided to Turkey for encryption purposes, Daily Sabah reported on Monday citing Dutch broadcaster Vpro.

The CIA asked Philips to weaken the encryption of Aroflex machines, used by Turkey for encryption purposes, ex-cryptographer with the company, Cees Jansen, told Vpro.

The machines, a telex intended for secret communication between NATO allies, were used for years by the Turkish Armed Forces to encrypt its most important communications.

Ankara, satisfied with the device, wanted to order additional units for communication between their embassies and internal communication for the military. But the U.S. officials wanted to provide a watered-down version so that they could gain access to Turkish communication, it said.

The CIA turned to Philips to weaken the encryption standard of the devices when Germany refused to cooperate, Jensen said.

"At that time I looked at it differently than now," the former Philips employee said. "I did what the boss asked me and made what needed to be made".