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German firms see rising Chinese cyber attacks

The Local · 24 Feb 2013, 10:08

Published: 24 Feb 2013 10:08 GMT+01:00

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A few months ago the European aerospace company EADS was on the receiving end of “a significant” attack, according to company sources. Officially the company acknowledged the attack, but did not say it was serious and kept quiet about possible damages.

The incident was so serious, however, that the company reported it to the German government, the magazine reported.

Industrial giant ThyssenKrupp also reported a “massive” attack in the middle of 2012, which it confirmed to the magazine. The company said the attackers’ addresses were Chinese. Bayer and IBM were also subjects of cyber attacks.

The German government recorded nearly 1,100 digital attacks from foreign intelligence agencies last year. Most were directed toward the chancellery, the foreign and economics ministries and were in the form of emails with Trojan-containing attachments.

Ahead of the G-20 summit hacker activity was especially intensive against the German delegation and was particularly directed at financial and energy policies. The Green party was also attacked, Der Spiegel reported.

Germany’s foreign intelligence agency, the BND, is planning to create a new subdivision to concentrate on cyber attackers. Government-employed hackers will be charged with infiltrating foreign computer systems and disabling them.

The German government is planning to require companies in Germany to report cyber attacks. Similar legislation is in the works in the European Union and in the United States, the magazine said. Deutsche Telekom is in full support of the reporting requirement.

Several US newspapers, including the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal have recently reported about cyber attacks from China. The US government has announced trade sanctions as a response to the attacks.

In extreme cases Washington reserves the right to use conventional arms to combat the problem and has made fighting cyber crimes and internet espionage a top priority.

Story continues below…

Recently Microsoft, Facebook, Apple and Twitter announced that unknown perpetrators had gained access to their companies' internal networks.

Twitter said hackers were able to copy a quarter of a million customer records. The trail to the perpetrators apparently leads to Eastern Europe, the magazine said.

The Local/mw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

11:35 February 24, 2013 by smart2012
I wonder then why German companies are disinvesting in Europe and investing in china, plus why they let /ask Chinese to buy part of their stocks.

Lets make it clear, Germany is trying to give a bad image to china as afraid of their competition, however in the back they make business with them (same with Russia). Hypocrisy as usual, ad dangerous for the world as history shows.
12:16 February 24, 2013 by ChrisRea
It seems that the only "proof" is that the IP address used is Chinese. So the hacker could be actually a Norwegian sitting in an internet cafe in Amsterdam and using a Chinese IP.

"The US government has announced trade sanctions as a response to the attacks." - Right, that will teach those hackers that are using Chinese IP addresses.

"In extreme cases Washington reserves the right to use conventional arms to combat the problem" - It makes sense. If China is bombed good enough, Internet will not work anymore there and hackers will have to use the IP addresses of another country. Problem solved!
12:57 February 24, 2013 by mannu4u4u
Latest Victim of Cyber Attack is Microsoft will u believe it http://www.hackersnewsbulletin.com/2013/02/latest-victim-of-cyber-attack-is.html
14:31 February 24, 2013 by ron1amr
It seems that China are seeking intelligence. They are now the second biggest producer of solar and wind turbines and it will not be long before they pass Germany. Probably in the next year or so. Are they trying to steal technology?

It doesn't surprise me that this is possibly happening.
15:25 February 24, 2013 by smart2012
Ron1amr u r 10 years behind (probably u just read BILD) but china I already number 1 economy in the world since 2012, and Germany is NOT number 2....
19:40 February 24, 2013 by taiwanluthiers
China isn't Iraq, US forces can't just go in and expect to come out in one piece.
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