Security service AIVD persuaded journalists attending the Olympic Games in Beijing in 2008 to spy on China, the Telegraaf reports.
Seven journalists were approached and promised payment if they would collect information and photos. Just one of them refused, according to the paper.
Those who agreed were asked to collect information and take photos of Chinese officials who approached representatives of Dutch industry.
The AIVD would not comment on the revelation, except to say the security service is allowed by law to approach anyone it thinks may have relevant information.
Journalists’ union NVJ said it is ‘shocked’ by the revelation, especially because journalists were paid for information. ‘It damages the credibility and independence of journalism,’ the union said.