Two Chinese Schools Accused as Sources of Online Attacks

Monday, February 22, 2010

Tracing the December cyber attacks on Google and other American companies back to two Chinese schools has expanded rather than narrowed the list of possible culprits behind the hacking. Initial conclusions pointed the finger at the Beijing government, and even in the wake of this latest news, some analysts continue to believe at least one of the schools was merely providing cover for the Chinese government.

But computer industry executives and former government officials feel another country may have been behind the attacks and used the schools to make the U.S. think China was responsible. Still others insist the hacking was part of a criminal industrial espionage operation bent on stealing intellectual property from American technology firms.
One of the schools involved in the cyber attacks was Shanghai Jiao Tong University, known as the Caltech of China, in part because of its renowned computer science program. Some of the university’s students recently won an international computer programming competition organized by IBM that involved Stanford and other leading American universities. Shanghai Jiao Tong University has been linked with at least one other high-profile hacking effort which targeted the White House’s website in 2001.
The other school identified in the attacks was Lanxiang Vocational School, where a computer science class taught by a Ukrainian professor may have had some involvement. Lanxiang is said to have ties with the Chinese military, even training some of its computer scientists.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
2 China Schools Said to Be Tied to Online Attacks (by John Markoff and David Barboza, New York Times)
China at War with U.S….Cyber War (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)


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