Part 1 of this article addressed the fact that the Chinese had hacked into major US news agencies. At the time of that writing it was alleged that the Chinese military was behind those attacks. Proving such a thing is very complicated and one of the reasons that the US has done so little in the face of mounting Chinese attacks on US companies. For their part, the Chinese steadfastly deny any state-sponsored hacking. Unfortunately for Beijing, Mandiant, a computer security firm, has strong evidence “proving” that China’s military has been attacking the US and its companies for years. Mandiant concluded that the Chinese military Unit 61398, located in Shanghai, was one such military hacking unit. As a matter of fact it was even uncovered that in 2004 that unit was actively recruiting hackers to join Unit 61398. This shows that Beijing has been updating its cyber army for quite some time now. The Mandiant report (1) also states that: Mandiant has been tracking security breaches or hacking since 2004. They claim that advanced threat actors “Advanced Persistent Threat” (APT) account for the majority of those breaches. Mandiant initially believed that the Chinese government authorized such groups but had no way to determine the extent of government involvement.
Browsing china hacking
This fall, the country was hit with a digital pandemic known as the Zeroaccess Botnet. This sophisticated malware actually has the ability to “learn” and evolve, to become one of the most infectious computer viruses to hit the globe. It also seems that no country is safe from the virus. No country, that is, except for China. The United States, Canada, and Great Britain were hit the hardest, with the rest of the European countries trailing closely behind. However, for reasons unknown, it appears that China is emerging almost completely unscathed from the viral attack. China’s overall lack of infection has not gone unnoticed, and has left many wondering, was China itself responsible for the Zeroaccess Botnet pandemic?
On August 3rd, Reuters reported that McAfee was set to reveal that the company has uncovered an extensive, far-reaching case of espionage. When the report came, foreign states were implicated in general, but China was not specifically blamed. Vice President of threat research for McAfee, Dmitri Alperovitch, told Reuters that “Operation Shady RAT” – the term used for a massive loss of information due to recent hacking efforts – poses a significant threat to the United States. He wrote the following statement in a blog post on the threat: “What is happening to all this data — by now reaching petabytes as a whole — is still largely an open question. However, if even a fraction of it is used to build better competing products or beat a competitor at a key negotiation (due to having stolen the other team’s playbook), the loss represents a massive economic threat.” According to The Washington Post, many analysts are blaming China for hacking up to 72 networks across the world, including 49 intrusions in the U.S. alone.