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  • Writer's pictureBy The Financial District

Downed Chinese Spy Balloon Sent Info To Beijing

The Chinese spy balloon that transited the US earlier this year was able to capture imagery and collect some signals intelligence from US military sites, a source familiar with the matter told Natasha Bertrand and Alex Marquardt of CNN.

Photo Insert: The balloon was able to transmit information back to Beijing in real-time.

The balloon was able to transmit information back to Beijing in real-time, the source said, and the US government still does not know for sure whether the Chinese government could wipe the balloon’s data as it received it.

The FBI is still examining the balloon, but so far officials have been able to glean additional information about how the device worked, including the algorithms used for the balloon’s software and how it is powered and designed.

Still, the intelligence community has not been overly concerned about the information the balloon was able to gather, the person said, because it is not much more sophisticated than what Chinese satellites are able to glean as they orbit over similar locations.

An intelligence official told CNN on Monday that “although analysis of the wreckage of the High-Altitude Balloon remains ongoing, thus far, its flight over the US does not appear to have provided critical new insights to the People’s Republic of China.”

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