Chinese Cyber-Spies Target US Officials and Defense Contractors
According to Security experts, Chinese cyber-spies targeted the personal Gmail accounts of top U.S. officials and tried to access computers owned by defense contractors and China specialists. This covert campaign is similar to the one disclosed by Google last week.
The cyber-spies are trying to get inside the high security walls through official government email accounts. They engage in phishing expeditions by sending emails to people who have data that the hacker is looking for.
The email would look like it was sent by a trusted colleague and would ask the receiver to open the attachment. Once the attachment is opened, a malware is installed in the computer that could track keystrokes or provide full access to the computer network.
The occurrence of phishing accidents increased in the past couple of months. The attacks were traced back to China but that would doesn’t mean that it was sanctioned by the Chinese government. The spokesman of the Chinese Embassy in Washington denied that his government was in any way involved in the schemes.
It is easier to target people close to the people with power because their computers are most likely to be less protected than those within the U.S. government. These individuals would often discuss sensitive topics with those in the government and this is the reason why the hackers target them.