Posts Tagged ‘China’

Chinese Hacker Training Site Shuts Down

February 8, 2010

A site under the moniker of Black Hawk Safety Net may sound reasonably innocent, but this morning three of its operators are waking up in a Chinese prison as authorities there shut down its operations. Far from being concerned with safety, BHSN is instead reported to be in the business of training hackers and providing them with malicious software, in fact it’s believed to be the biggest online training camp for potential hackers in China.

According to a BBC post this morning which referenced reports in the China Daily and the Wuhan Evening News, the hacker training operation openly recruited thousands of members online and provided them with cyber attack lessons and Trojan software. BHSN was said to have recruited more than 12,000 paying subscribers and collected more than 7 million yuan (€730,000) in membership fees, while another 170,000 people had signed up for free membership.

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Google Gets Tooled Up with the NSA

February 4, 2010

There’s been a mixed reaction to the news that Google is set to team up with the National Security Agency (NSA) in the US to ward off cyber-attacks. Google, still reeling from recent hacking controversies in China, has decided to pull out the big guns and enlist the NSA, whom the Washington Post refer to as “the world’s most powerful electronic surveillance organisation”.

The Post report that broke the story tells how, while an agreement is yet to finalised, the nuts and bolts of the deal would see the NSA help Google analyse the “major corporate espionage attack that the firm said originated in China and targeted its computer networks, according to cyber-security experts familiar with the matter”. The overall aim is to better defend Google – and its users – from future attack.

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Google to Ditch IE6

February 1, 2010

Google has moved to drop support for Microsoft’s much maligned Internet Explorer 6, which is very much the bad penny of the Internet Explorer line, simply refusing to give up the ghost (and causing bloggers to mix metaphors cocktail-style).

Goodnight, sweet prince.

Given the recent security debate sparked by Google’s suffering of a large-scale attack in China, the spotlight has fallen on Internet Explorer as, to use Microsoft’s term, “one of the vectors” by which the attack was executed. While Microsoft, and others, have been quick to point out that more recent incarnations of IE are plenty secure, it’s IE6 that continues to take a beating.

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Android Gets Conditional Love from China

January 28, 2010

In amongst all the iPad hoopla many have forgotten the other big tech story of the year so far, namely the various maneuverings between China and Google. The lovers tiff turned ugly has a faint air of reconciliation about it today, as the Chinese Government announced that it won’t block the use of Google’s Android operating system on mobile phones in the country as long as the operating system abides by Chinese law. I did say it was only a ‘faint air’ of reconciliation.

Are things a little rosier between China and Google today? Well, kinda, they should play with Lego until they find a resolution, the same goes for the Northern Assembly talks.

Anyway, Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology spokesperson Zhu Hongren has been quoted as saying, “As long as it complies with Chinese laws and regulations, and as long as it has good cooperation with operators… their use of the system won’t be limited.” (more…)

Google Requests Shot Down by China

January 22, 2010

China has rebuffed Google’s and the US’ requests that it consider its internet policy, with spokesmen referring to the recent criticism directed at China as “groundless accusations.”

Word comes from the BBC of the response from China after the furore kicked up by Google, after seeing a series attack from the country, ceasing to censor searches made by its Chinese users. Indeed, all of this seems to come on the back of US Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton, requested that China investigate the attack launched on Google, going on to request that it change its current policy on the internet.

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Microsoft Questions Firefox’s Security

January 19, 2010

Microsoft seems to be having a hard time lately, with government bodies in both France and Germany now having advised their relative web-based populations against the use the company’s web browser, Internet Explorer.

The criticisms of Internet Explorer from both France and Germany seem to stem from the revelation that a vulnerability in Internet Explorer was used during last week’s Chinese attack on Google, revealed during security firm McAfee’s investigation of the attack. Initially, Microsoft had responded to the criticism by pointing out that the security issue is easily solved by users changing their security settings to “High,” which should see them protected from the exploit in question.

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German Government Condemns Internet Explorer

January 18, 2010

The German government has warned against its web-browsing population using Internet Explorer, for security reasons.

According to the BBC, the warning comes from the Federal Office for Information Security. Microsoft has responded to the statement, pointing out that the risk to general users is actually quite slim, recommending that users, once again, enable the “high” security option that Internet Explorer offers. Still, with the warning having been issued the likelihood is that there are plenty of Germans on the lookout for a new browser.

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US Government not Interfering with Google/China

January 18, 2010

The US government is to stay well out of Google’s ongoing spat with China after the company reported a massive cyber attack on its Chinese operation last week.

The initial response from the White House came from spokesman Robert Gibbs, who said that, “The president and this administration have beliefs about the freedom of the internet… The right to a free internet is what many of you heard the president talk about in China.” Now though, it seems as though there’s been a bit of a backtrack, and the US government doesn’t want too much to do with the whole kafuffle.

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Internet Explorer Exploited in China Hack

January 15, 2010

It seems that Microsoft’s Internet Explorer web browser was one of the platforms exploited during the by now infamous attack on Google and a number of other companies doing business in China.

It’s certainly an interesting case, but it would be a touch unfair to say that Microsoft’s software is to blame for the attack. Indeed, it seems that Microsoft itself has been fairly quick to admit that a portion of the attacks came from IE, but even that admission points out that its browser was only one part of a complicated attack.

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Microsoft Downplays Google’s China Stance

January 15, 2010

Microsoft and Hewlett Packard’s executives have both admitted that they won’t be backing Google’s stance in China, after it revealed this week that it had been the target of a major attack.

Despite Google having received word of support from both Yahoo and the White House when it announced that it would no longer be censoring content on its Chinese services, Microsoft and HP have both gone in the opposite direction. Indeed, according to the Financial Times, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer essentially admitted that China was a big enough market to be worth the headaches.

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