China Government Struck by 500,000 Cyberattacks in 2010

By Erin Harrison August 09, 2011

Almost half of the nearly 500,000 cyberattacks aimed at computers in China in 2010 originated overseas, according to government officials who reportedly said the vast majority of the attacks a Chinese monitoring agency reported were in the form of Trojan horse malware that installs on computers.

The Trojan horse malware allows cybercriminals to monitor usage and access personal information, the Associated Press reported.

The news comes just days after computer security firm McAfee said it had “uncovered a massive global cyber spying campaign it described as a five-year targeted operation by one unnamed actor – which several analysts have indicated was China,” the AFP reported Tuesday.

The findings were reported on the website of the National Computer Network Emergency Response Coordination Center of China, according to the AP, which said that “of those Trojan horse attacks, 14.7 percent of those were traced to IP addresses in the United States and 8 percent in India.”

CNCERT/CC is a national level CERT organization responsible for the coordination of activities among all Computer Emergency Response Teams within China concerning incidents on national public networks, according to CNCERT /CC officials.

Dmitri Alperovitch, vice president, threat research at McAfee and author of the Aug. 5 report, said McAfee is “publishing the most comprehensive analysis ever revealed of victim profiles from a five-year targeted operation by one specific actor, ‘Operation Shady RAT,’ as I have named it at McAfee (RAT is a common acronym in the industry that stands for remote access tool).”

McAfee said it had identified “72 targeted intrusions” – 49 of them American, including 14 federal, state and county agencies and 11 defense contractors – and also informed law enforcement agencies, which it said were investigating.

With broad suspicion falling on China, recent reports have suggested Beijing might be behind long-term security attacks internationally.

“McAfee Inc. reported in early August that cyberattacks lasting at least five years targeted more than 70 entities,” the AP reported. Those entities include national governments; targets identified by the firm include the United Nations, the International Olympic Committee and many American companies

China has not responded officially but state media has said the speculation of a Chinese link was irresponsible, the AP said. Instead, China has denied charges of hacking and claims that its own country is a victim of hacking.

Jeff Moss, an Internet security expert, defended the country, saying it would be difficult to narrow down the suspects in a broad campaign. “China is a pretty convenient punching bag,” he told The New York Times.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2011, taking place Sept. 13-15, 2011, in Austin, Texas. ITEXPO offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. To register, click here.



Erin Harrison is Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives, for TMC, where she oversees the company's strategic editorial initiatives, including the launch of several new print and online initiatives. She plays an active role in the print publications and TechZone360, covering IP communications, information technology and other related topics. To read more of Erin's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Jennifer Russell

Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
Related Articles

Bloomberg BETA: Models Are Key to Machine Intelligence

By: Paula Bernier    4/19/2018

James Cham, partner at seed fund Bloomberg BETA, was at Cisco Collaboration Summit today talking about the importance of models to the future of machi…

Read More

Get Smart About Influencer Attribution in a Blockchain World

By: Maurice Nagle    4/16/2018

The retail value chain is in for a blockchain-enabled overhaul, with smarter relationships, delivering enhanced transparency across an environment of …

Read More

Facebook Flip-Flopping on GDPR

By: Maurice Nagle    4/12/2018

With GDPR on the horizon, Zuckerberg in Congress testifying and Facebook users questioning loyalty, change is coming. What that change will look like,…

Read More

The Next Phase of Flash Storage and the Mid-Sized Business

By: Joanna Fanuko    4/11/2018

Organizations amass profuse amounts of data these days, ranging from website traffic metrics to online customer surveys. Collectively, AI, IoT and eve…

Read More

Satellite Imaging - Petabytes of Developer, Business Opportunities

By: Doug Mohney    4/11/2018

Hollywood has programmed society into believing satellite imaging as a magic, all-seeing tool, but the real trick is in analysis. Numerous firms are f…

Read More