An elite unit of Chinese hackers that allegedly waged a massive cyber-espionage campaign against U.S. companies has attempted to clean up their online presence after being identified in a public report by information security firm Mandiant.
Hackers have embedded viruses into a security report which linked the Chinese army to cyberattacks on U.S. companies, infecting computers that download digital versions of the 60-page report.
When downloaded, the tainted versions would allow hackers to remotely control infected computers after users attempted to read the report which was released last week by U.S. IT security vendor, Mandiant.
Maybe it wasn’t China. Maybe it was, but suppose it wasn’t. That’s the reaction of at least one computer security consultant to yesterday’s blockbuster report from the security firm Mandiant, which accused a unit of China’s People’s Liberation Army of carrying out a series of hacking attacks against companies in the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and elsewhere over a series of years.
Jeffrey Carr, CEO of Taia Global, writes today in a blog post that he thinks Mandiant’s report is full of holes.
A private technology security firm on Tuesday described in extraordinary detail efforts it blamed on a Chinese military unit to hack into 141 businesses, mostly inside the U.S., and steal commercial secrets. China denies the claim. Here's a look at the company, Mandiant, and why its report is significant.
What is Mandiant?
A secretive Chinese military unit is believed to be behind a prolific series of hacking attacks, a U.S. computer security company said, contradicting claims by China's government that it is not involved in such operations.
The report by Mandiant identified the People's Liberation Army's Shanghai-based Unit 61398 as the most likely driving force behind the hacking. Mandiant said it believed the unit had carried out "sustained" attacks on a wide set of industries.