9:13 p.m. What are they up to ?!!! …

Dozens of countries , companies and organisations , ranging from the US government to the UN and the Olympic movement have had their computers systematically hacked over the past five years by one country , according to a report by a leading US internet security company …

The report , by McAfee , did not openly blame any country but hinted strongly that China was the most likely culprit , a view endorsed by analysts …

China has previously been implicated in a range of alleged incidents of cyberspying ( a practice Beijing vehemently denies ) including a concerted attack on Google and several attempts to prise secrets from computers at the Foreign Office. But the McAfee report is among the most thorough attempts yet to map the scale and range of such data-theft efforts …

The study traced the spread of one particular spying malware , usually spread by a ” phishing ” email which , if opened , downloaded a hidden programme on to the computer network. Through tracing this malware and also gaining access to a ” command and control ” computer server used by the intruders , McAfee identified 72 compromised companies and organisations. Many more had been hacked but could not be identified from the logs …

” After painstaking analysis of the logs, even we were surprised by the enormous diversity of the victim organisations and were taken aback by the audacity of the perpetrators ” said Dmitri Alperovitch , the company’s head of threat research and the author of the report …

Of the hacking victims 49 were US-based , among them various arms of federal , state and local government , as well as defence contractors and other industries. There were two targets in the UK , a defence company and a computer security firm , while other governments included those of Taiwan, South Korea, and India …

via Cyber-hacking: prolonged series of attacks by one country uncovered | Technology | The Guardian.

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