Feeds

Chinese crackers attack US.gov

Incoming!

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Chinese hackers have launched a sustained attack against the web systems of the US Department of Commerce.

Security experts reckon attacks originating from computer crackers largely located in China's Guangdong province are aimed at extracting sensitive information from targets such as the Commerce Department's technology export office.

Security consultants and US government officials reckon the assaults have at least the tacit support of the Chinese government, AFP reports.

The scope of the attacks has prompted the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), which manages US technology exports for both commercial and military use, to overhaul its computer systems and security defences. Information housed on the department's systems includes sensitive commercial and economic data on US exporters as well as data involving law enforcement records.

"BIS discovered a targeted effort to gain access to BIS user accounts," Commerce Department spokesperson Richard Mills said. "They took a series of immediate action steps to ensure that no BIS data is compromised. We have no evidence that any BIS data has been lost or compromised," Mills said.

Mills declined to speculate on the origins of the attacks but unnamed US government sources and security experts are pointing the finger of blame towards China. It's not the first time hackers in China have been accused of launching cyber-attacks on the computer systems of Western governments. Attacks on UK government systems using a then unpatched Microsoft Windows Meta File (WMF) exploit last Christmas were traced back to China.

All this alleged cloak and dagger activity is beginning to have an effect on US computer procurement decisions. The planned purchase of 18,000 computers manufactured by Lenovo in China by the State Department was blocked after legislators raised national security concerns, AFP reports. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
Chinese hackers spied on investigators of Flight MH370 - report
Classified data on flight's disappearance pinched
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Researchers camouflage haxxor traps with fake application traffic
Honeypots sweetened to resemble actual workloads, complete with 'secure' logins
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.