SUPERPOWER HACKING WARS
Earlier in May, United States had accused five members of the Chinese military of hacking computers for economic espionage purposes. It accused them of hacking into five US nuclear and technology companies’ computer systems and a major steel workers union’s system, conducting economic espionage and stealing confidential business information, sensitive trade secrets and internal communications for competitive advantage. The US-China cyber warfare is now headed for a worse turn after a declassified Senate report says that Chinese military actors successfully hacked into Pentagon contractor networks nine times.
AS per the latest report submitted in the US Senate, Chinese military actors hacked into the computer networks of civilian transportation companies hired by the Pentagon at least nine times.
The Chinese military actors are believed to have broken into computer networks aboard a commercial ship hired by Pentagon. They also targeted logistics companies and uploaded malicious software onto an airline’s computers, Senate investigators said in a filing on Wednesday.
The investigation which lasted a whole year and its report was submitted by the Senate Armed Services Committee. The SASC identified at least 20 break-ins or other unspecified cyber events targeting US interests. These 20 attempts include the above said nine successful break-ins of Pentagon contractor networks.
The SASC has blamed the Chinese government and its military, the PLA, for all the most sophisticated intrusions, although it did not provide any detailed evidence to prove their claims. The Senate report also did not identify the transportation companies which were targeted for hacking. However the report said that the commercial ship contracted by Transcom for logistics routes and the airlines used by US military were among those targets which were compromised.
Investigators said the hackers was able to steal emails, documents, user accounts and computer codes from above machines.
PUNISHING THE GUILTY – A DISTANT DREAM FOR US AUTHORITIES
Although Attorney General Eric Holder vowed to bring the Chinese state actors to United States to face the US law it is felt as a empty threat as US has no extradition treaty with China nor will China handover its military personnel to US for judicial indictment.
China’s government did not immediately respond to telephone messages and emails from The Associated Press requesting comment in Beijing and to its embassy in Washington.
Whosoever said that the next war will be fought in the cyber arena is probably correct in his prognosis of the current situation in the cyber world.