Security Rumbles: January 2013
Today, the New York Times is reporting that they have been battling in cyberspace with hackers who are believed to be from China (https://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/31/technology/chinese-hackers-infiltrate-new-york-times-computers.html?pagewanted=1&ref=technology). This is an excellent look into the details of how a cyber-attack occurs, and their response.
The article describes how The Times worked with security experts over the past four months to block determined attacks against their staff and infrastructure, both in China and here in the U.S. These attacks coincided with a series of articles investigating relatives of the Chinese Prime Minister, Wen Jiabao, who have reportedly amassed personal fortunes worth billions. The security experts also report that these attacks emanated from China, and bore the hallmarks of previous attacks associated with the Chinese military.
This story is another in a disturbing trend of state sponsored cyber warfare, and China isn’t the only combatant. The U.S. and Israel are thought to have created Stuxnet, a malicious program that many credit for disabling Iran’s nuclear enrichment facilities. Iran has retaliated by targeting U.S. businesses, and Russia is thought to have targeted Georgia’s networks during their war in 2008.
In other news, what is thought to be a five year long private espionage ring called the “Red October” campaign was discovered earlier this month. It has been described as successfully accessing “…diplomatic, governmental and scientific research organizations, gathering data and intelligence from mobile devices, computer systems and network equipment.” (https://www.securelist.com/en/blog/785/The_Red_October_Campaign_An_Advanced_Cyber_Espionage_Network_Targeting_Diplomatic_and_Government_Agencies)