Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

Report: Google China Hack Might Be Inside Job

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 26 comments

Washington sends "diplomatic note" to China asking for an explanation on Google hacking incident.

As the topic of Google and China litter the headlines, we continually wonder whether or not the search giant will continue business in the censorship-filled country. But before Google can go any further, it needs to investigate what happened when it had its networks attacked by hackers.

New wire Reuters today published a story that cites its own sources as saying that the hacking of the networks may have been an inside job.

"The sources, who are familiar with the situation, told Reuters that the attack, which targeted people who have access to specific parts of Google networks, may have been facilitated by people working in Google China's office."

Security analysts also told Reuters that the malicious software used in the hack was a trojan called Hydraq.

Perhaps even more interesting from the story is that it notes: "Washington said it was issuing a diplomatic note to China formally requesting an explanation for the attacks."

Just last week, U.S. Ambassador to China, Jon Huntsman, said that the U.S. government will be staying out of any negotiations that Google may have with China following the hacking incident.

Discuss
Display all 26 comments.
This thread is closed for comments
Top Comments
  • 12 Hide
    kyeana , January 19, 2010 6:54 PM
    The plot thickens.
Other Comments
  • 12 Hide
    kyeana , January 19, 2010 6:54 PM
    The plot thickens.
  • 5 Hide
    elmo2006 , January 19, 2010 7:00 PM
    Why is the U.S. government requesting an 'explanation of the attacks' when the U.S. government indicated they will be staying out of any negotiations that Google may have with China following the hacking incident?

    @kyeana - indeed!
  • 4 Hide
    jsc , January 19, 2010 7:03 PM
    Perhaps an inside job? What a surprise.
  • -4 Hide
    sunflier , January 19, 2010 7:04 PM
    With Google maps and Google using technology to "spy" or snoop on it's search engine users to obtain internet habits etc. Now, in-turn someone spys (hacks) to find out about Google.

    Look. I'm not totally against Google but does anyone here see the irony??
  • -3 Hide
    elmo2006 , January 19, 2010 7:19 PM
    @sunflier

    +1
  • -8 Hide
    Studly007 , January 19, 2010 7:20 PM
    Commies are war-mongers. I wonder if the red flagged "PRC" will use this incident to escalate military tension in the Pacific.
  • 2 Hide
    ready4dis , January 19, 2010 7:23 PM
    sunflierWith Google maps and Google using technology to "spy" or snoop on it's search engine users to obtain internet habits etc. Now, in-turn someone spys (hacks) to find out about Google.Look. I'm not totally against Google but does anyone here see the irony??


    Yes, but the methods used to obtain said information is slightly different. One is by tracking what users type into a text box, another is illegally gaining access to a secured network through security flaws. I do agree it's slightly ironic, but google doesn't 'spy', it just records available data. The same thing that many other companies do, collect data from clients to see what their typical habbits are. At least google is pretty straight forward about it. Do you have any clues on how many ways your bank watches your transactions? Credit card purchases (and i'm not just talking about the credit bureau's), etc. There are more things to be worried about than google remembering that you searched for pink slippers 3 times from the same IP address.
  • 2 Hide
    micr0be , January 19, 2010 7:57 PM
    to quote Conan O'Brien ... "Somebody's gona get fiiired"
  • 2 Hide
    Socnom , January 19, 2010 8:03 PM
    This is a more serious threat to China's populous than most people realize. When you combine the fact that Google has a recorded history of what someone does on their site (from x ip location) with the way China dictates over its people, you get a very serious problem. I leave the rest up to your imagination. I'm not being a conspiracy theorist, just a realist.
  • 1 Hide
    sailfish , January 19, 2010 8:14 PM
    sunflierWith Google maps and Google using technology to "spy" or snoop on it's search engine users to obtain internet habits etc. Now, in-turn someone spys (hacks) to find out about Google.Look. I'm not totally against Google but does anyone here see the irony??


    That's an apologist statement and not a very convincing one, either. Your use of the words "spy" and "snoop" are bogus. Users freely and willingly provide Google (and every other search engine) this data and Google only saves the IP-less data which is perfectly legal.

    There's no irony here, just a very thin gruel of an argument, imo.
  • -4 Hide
    ktasley , January 19, 2010 8:31 PM
    sunflier-

    the hacks were not targeted at "google" they were targeted at Chinese human rights activists using google accounts.

    No one is "spys (hacks) to find out about Google" as you put it.
  • 1 Hide
    rjkucia , January 19, 2010 8:47 PM
    That picture made my day.
  • -1 Hide
    climber , January 19, 2010 8:55 PM
    seems like perhaps PRC secret service or spy agency employees covertly got jobs at Google, then at the right time started to hack the network from the inside out? I wonder how many other Corporations based in one country, having offices in other countries have spy agency personnel working at those corporations in the host country?
  • -3 Hide
    wayneepalmer , January 19, 2010 9:07 PM
    Asian country, once completely outside modern Western world, completely remakes its society to imitate much of major Western economies salted with an old culture and lots of national pride (and a much lower value on life of its citizens).

    FROM ITS PERSPECTIVE - Asian country is snubbed repeatedly, its actions to imitate certain imperialist Western actions are soundly denounced by what it sees as hypocritical Western powers. Western powers arrogantly devalue its economic progress, impede its ability to access needed resources and act generally in a superior manner. Asian country tries to make its irritation known and the exchange of insults and warnings ramp up the tension.

    Western powers arrogantly neglect their own defense and the anger increases until Asian power sees an opening to force Western powers to back down and recognize Asian nation's ascendancy.

    Questions:

    Am I talking about Imperial Japan circa 1941 or formerly communist People's Republic of China circa 2010? Does anyone see the parallels? What will Pearl Harbor look like this time around?

    The Chinese military have said repeatedly they've learned the lessons of Japan's mistakes and they won't leave us able to come back if they have to knock us down.

    Think about it.
  • 6 Hide
    darkknight22 , January 19, 2010 9:09 PM
    I'm going to go grab my popcorn, this should be interesting. Probably should send in Jack Bauer.
  • 3 Hide
    Troman , January 19, 2010 9:15 PM
    "Commies are war-mongers. I wonder if the red flagged "PRC" will use this incident to escalate military tension in the Pacific."

    Absolutely.

    They dropped two nuclear bombs, invaded Iraq two times, Serbia, Afghanistan, they threaten Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, they have military bases all around the globe, they support war criminals like Saakashvili and their military expenditure account for 40% of the military expenditure of all countries of the world. Ohh wait... that's not Chinese "Commies"! That's US imperial war-mongers!

    People who live in glass houses should not throw stones...
  • 1 Hide
    UmeNNis , January 19, 2010 9:40 PM
    wayneepalmer...Questions: Am I talking about Imperial Japan circa 1941 or formerly communist People's Republic of China circa 2010? Does anyone see the parallels? ....

    Formerly communist? Really? You do mean 'currently', yes?
  • 0 Hide
    jman7 , January 19, 2010 9:45 PM
    ktasleysunflier-the hacks were not targeted at "google" they were targeted at Chinese human rights activists using google accounts.No one is "spys (hacks) to find out about Google" as you put it.

    Yes this specific incident wasn't spying on Google itself but the fact that they were successful at the hack they did shows that the Chinese spies have successfully spied enough to know how Google works in great detail. They have been spying on Google for years and now we see the results. They can spy on any Google customer at will. They have probably been spying on all Google executives and key employees. They probably have the keys to raid any other Google operation world wide now. Google likely needs to rewrite their security world wide. There is likely more to this then they are saying. Most likely lots of Western spies and Human Rights proponents in China are going to the torture chambers and firing squads as we speak. People forget what kinds of people are in the leadership of this country. They will anyone who gets in their way and there are no legal protections nor Bill of Rights to defend any of their victims.
  • 0 Hide
    drowned , January 19, 2010 10:43 PM
    This could add fuel to google's pulling-out-of-china fire. If they can't trust chinese employees (in china) then what's the point of having offices there?

    PS - Damn commies.
  • 1 Hide
    sandmanwn , January 20, 2010 12:12 AM
    micr0beto quote Conan O'Brien ... "Somebody's gona get fiiired"

    This is China... Someone will have two large nasty guys with gloves showing up at their door in the middle of the night to toss you out the window.
Display more comments