- Posted on November 1, 2011 at 2:43pm by Liz Klimas
BEIJING (The Blaze/AP) — A U.S. computer security company says from its analysis, cyber attacks on at least 48 chemical and military-related companies in an effort to steal technical secrets have been traced to China.
The targets included 29 chemical companies and 19 others that make advanced materials used by the military, California-based Symantec Corp. said in a report. It said the group included multiple Fortune 100 companies but did not identify them.
Figure 1 from Symantec’s report: This data is derived from the IP addresses of machines connecting back to the command and control server. The majority of infected machines are located in the US, Bangladesh and the UK; however, overall there is wide geographical spread of infections.
“The purpose of the attacks appears to be industrial espionage, collecting intellectual property for competitive advantage,” said the report.
This news comes in as China is also denying an accusation made last week by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission that the country hacked into two U.S. weather monitoring satellites, Reuters reports. The commission states that it hasn’t actually traced these weather satellite hacks back to China, but that the hacks appear consistent with “with authoritative Chinese military writings”.
Security experts say China is a center for Internet crime. Attacks against governments, companies and human rights groups have been traced to this country, though finding the precise source is nearly impossible. China’s military is a leader in cyberwarfare research but the government has rejected allegations of cyberspying and says it also is a target.