Back in September, visiting dignitaries attending the G20 summit near St. Petersburg received complimentary gift baskets, that probably contained some snacks and maybe a nice bottle of wine, and almost definitely memory sticks and electronics cables designed to spy on communications. This according to two Italian newspapers, whose findings were relayed by the Los Angeles Times. The newspaper La Stampa wrote of the effort, “They were Trojan horses designed to obtain information from computers and cellphones.”
According to Il Corriere della Sera, concern about the devices was first raised by European Council president Herman Von Rompuy, who had the devices analyzed. The investigation found that, "the USB sticks and the recharge cables are suitable for undercover detection of computer data and mobile phones." More tests, however, are underway and official response will not take place until those findings are completed.
Over in Russia, a spokesperson for the Kremlin accused the West of trying to direct attention away from their own growing catalog of spying allegations. "It is definitely nothing other than an attempt to switch attention from the problems that really exist, which dominate the agenda between the European capitals and Washington, to problems that are ephemeral and non-existent," Dmitry Peskov stated.