Attacks/Breaches
1/13/2010
05:03 PM
Connect Directly
Google+
LinkedIn
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Chinese Spy Agency Behind Google Cyber Attack, Report Claims

The cyber attacks that contributed to Google's reevaluation of its operations in China also hit 33 other companies.

In a blog post heard around the world, though muffled in China's state-controlled media, Google said on Tuesday that it and at least 20 other companies in the the Internet, finance, technology, media and chemical sectors had been targeted in a sophisticated cyber attack in December.

Due to this attack, which resulted in the theft of unspecified intellectual property, and a hostile business climate, Google said it would stop censoring Google.cn, a decision which could lead to the closure of the company's Chinese search service. Whether that happens will depend on how the Chinese government reacts.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Tuesday expressed concern about Google's claims and asked the Chinese government for an explanation. She said she intended to give a speech next week "on the centrality of Internet freedom in the 21st century."

A report issued on Tuesday by iDefense, a computer security company owned by Verisign, states that 33 other companies were targeted in the attack. It also says that those responsible were working either directly on on behalf of official intelligence entities of the People's Republic of China.

"Two independent, anonymous iDefense sources in the defense contracting and intelligence consulting community confirmed that both the source IPs and drop server of the attack correspond to a single foreign entity consisting either of agents of the Chinese state or proxies thereof," the report says.

Eli Jellenc, head of international cyber intelligence at Verisign iDefense, stopped short of claiming that the attackers were formally employed by a Chinese intelligence agency.

"We can't determine whether the attackers themselves have 'intelligence agency' on their office door or are a paid proxy," he said.

Adobe on Tuesday said that it learned of "a sophisticated, coordinated attack against corporate network systems managed by Adobe and other companies" on January 2 and that it is investigating the incident. It said that it had no evidence that any sensitive information had been compromised.

Both Google and Adobe declined to provide further details about the attacks, stating that the incidents are still under investigation.

Internet Web hosting company Rackspace has confirmed that it was subject to attack, noting that no customer data was compromised or altered.

According to The Washington Post, Dow Chemical and Northrop Grumman may also have been targets of the attacks.

Other targets of the attack have yet to be publicly identified.

Previous
1 of 2
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Dark Reading, January 2015
To find and fix exploits aimed directly at your business, stop waiting for alerts and become a proactive hunter.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2014-3580
Published: 2014-12-18
The mod_dav_svn Apache HTTPD server module in Apache Subversion 1.x before 1.7.19 and 1.8.x before 1.8.11 allows remote attackers to cause a denial of service (NULL pointer dereference and server crash) via a REPORT request for a resource that does not exist.

CVE-2014-6076
Published: 2014-12-18
IBM Security Access Manager for Mobile 8.x before 8.0.1 and Security Access Manager for Web 7.x before 7.0.0 FP10 and 8.x before 8.0.1 allow remote attackers to conduct clickjacking attacks via a crafted web site.

CVE-2014-6077
Published: 2014-12-18
Cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerability in IBM Security Access Manager for Mobile 8.x before 8.0.1 and Security Access Manager for Web 7.x before 7.0.0 FP10 and 8.x before 8.0.1 allows remote attackers to hijack the authentication of arbitrary users for requests that insert XSS sequences.

CVE-2014-6078
Published: 2014-12-18
IBM Security Access Manager for Mobile 8.x before 8.0.1 and Security Access Manager for Web 7.x before 7.0.0 FP10 and 8.x before 8.0.1 do not have a lockout period after invalid login attempts, which makes it easier for remote attackers to obtain admin access via a brute-force attack.

CVE-2014-6080
Published: 2014-12-18
SQL injection vulnerability in IBM Security Access Manager for Mobile 8.x before 8.0.1 and Security Access Manager for Web 7.x before 7.0.0 FP10 and 8.x before 8.0.1 allows remote authenticated users to execute arbitrary SQL commands via unspecified vectors.

Best of the Web
Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
Join us Wednesday, Dec. 17 at 1 p.m. Eastern Time to hear what employers are really looking for in a chief information security officer -- it may not be what you think.