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China might be behind USCC hack

Not India
Fri Jan 20 2012, 12:40

US OFFICIALS have suggested that China was behind a recent hack on the US China Economic and Security Review Commission (USCC).

We reported earlier this month that Indian hacking group The Lords of Dharmaraja had released documentation that it said was gained from the Indian military. One section stated that mobile phone vendors RIM, Nokia and Apple had given backdoor access to networks in return for market presence. It seemed that the backdoor access was used to spy on the USCC.

A large data cache of emails, largely spam, now suggests that the main target of the attack was the non-governmental National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC) not the USCC.

William Reinsch, head of the NFTC told Reuters that there is "no particular reason" why the Indian government or Indian hackers would be interested in his organisation. He and several US officials said that Chinese hackers would have a large interest in the USCC's activities, both private and public.

He suggested that the hackers could be associated with the Chinese government or just a bunch of amateurs. Reinsch first became aware that large numbers of emails had been hacked in November of last year.

The unnamed US officials couldn't understand why India would be interested in spying on the USCC since its work has little to do with the country. However, the USCC has been a regular target of phishing scams, attacks which investigators strongly believe were rooted in China.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry put out a brief statement declaring that it "consistently and strongly opposed" the practice. µ


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