US Navy Hit by Chinese Hackers, China Denies Accusation

The hacking mission was first identified on Wednesday by Microsoft Corp. and confirmed by relevant authorities in the US, the UK, and other allied nations.

Microsoft mentioned that the hacking group, named the Volt Typhoon, had reportedly breached government, manufacturing, communications, and IT organizations in Guam and the US, a critical military post in the western Pacific Ocean.

While the identities of most of the hacking victims remain unknown, the Secretary of the US Navy, Carlos Del Toro, on Thursday, informed CNBC that the Navy had been impacted by the intrusions.

The extent of the breach was not known right away. A spokesperson for the US Navy refused to talk about the status of their “networks.”

In the meantime, the director of the cybersecurity department at the National Security Agency, informed CNN on Thursday that the hackers from China could still have access to the most sensitive US networks that they’ve already targeted. Joyce explained further that the intrusions stood out in how brazen they were in both — scope and scale.

An NSA representative declined to comment and referred instead to a release published by the NSA and other US-based agencies on the Chinese hacking network.

Microsoft stated that it had “moderate confidence” and that the breaches were conducted to upend communications in the event of a future crisis.

The firm’s disclosure came amid rising concerns that China may take military action to enable its claim for the self-ruled island of Taiwan.

The NSA’s director of operations until his retirement, after spending 39 years at the spy agency in August, said that the operation had matched a well-known way of infiltrating networks by accessing those at the edges rather than at what he referred to as the bulls-eye and then being undetected for several years.

The interesting bit is that the hackers got in from just home routers into the US Navy’s infrastructure, said Darby, who is unfamiliar with the details of this case.

The scary part is that they could introduce destructive or disruptive attacks when things start hitting the fan, he explained. If they are in these networks, they can easily wreak havoc. You have to identify and plug the vulnerabilities that permitted them to get into the networks and then eradicate them.

The NSA, in collaboration with intelligence agencies spread across the UK, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand shared further details on the hackers. Those nations are part of a chief intelligence alliance, which includes sharing of cybersecurity information, referred to as the Five Eyes.

China has, however, denied all kinds of hacking accusations.

The highly unprofessional report — a patchwork with a broken chain of evidence, has been observed by China’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Mao Ning.

Apparently, this was a collective disinformation campaign introduced by the US via the Five Eyes to satisfy its geopolitical agenda. It is well-known that Five Eyes is the largest intelligence association in the world, and the NSA is the biggest hacking group in the world.

The US has earlier accused the Chinese hacking group of espionage and theft of intellectual property, including an unforeseen data breach of the Office of Personnel Management (2015) and a hack of Equifax (2017).
In 2014, a Senate panel discovered that Chinese government-affiliated hackers had accessed the data of military contractors, including that of airlines and tech majors.

It is not yet clear why Microsoft, the US, and its allies decided on shining a spotlight on the hacking network, particularly this week. A reason may be to offer private firms a head start on defending from this group of Chinese hackers way before a possible conflict over Taiwan with China, mentioned John Hultquist, the chief analyst associated with Mandiant Intelligence, which is a subsidiary of Google.

The burden of safeguarding critical infrastructure from major and disruptive cyberattacks lies with the private sector. They ought to defend the networks, Hultquist mentioned.

That is why it is so essential that intelligence makes its way into their hands. If it does not, it is futile.

Details regarding the alleged attacks share rare insights into the probable sabotage efforts by Chinese hackers, whose theft of intellectual property and espionage capabilities are quite well-known. By contrast, cybersecurity specialists have documented Russia’s attacks on crucial infrastructure, including the hacking of the power grid in Ukraine, which is also well documented.

A consultant at the Krebs Stamos Group, Dakota Cary said that the hacking organization has been around for a long time.

When they stepped over a line to get something of military operational value, that is when it got altered.

References: CNBC , Hindustantimes 

Disclaimer :
The information contained in this website is for general information purposes only. While we endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk.

In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data or profits arising out of, or in connection with, the use of this website.

Do you have info to share with us ? Suggest a correction

Latest Shipping News You Would Like:

Get the Latest Maritime News Delivered to Your Inbox!

Our free, fast, and fun newsletter on the global maritime industry, delivered everyday.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *