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Locked

Canadian Government hacked by someone in China

By JamesRL ·
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/940355--foreign-hackers-break-into-canadian-government-computers-report

I'm very much hoping the reporters or their sources got it wrong. I'd hate to think there was one "key password" that unlocked the whole network.

The TV news this morning indicated that the hackers had accessed a secret Treasury department network thought to be unknown to most government employees.

Sounds like Ottawa needs more security consultants.

Anyone else think that this is war?

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I don't know that I have ever thought of it as a war

by Tigger_Two In reply to Canadian Government hacke ...

But you certainly could be correct. As technology has expanded, so too has it's reach.

I'm trying to wrap my brain around how technology would be used as a tool of war. It isn't a case of too few applications, it is a case of too many.

Truthfully, the incident in the article reminded me of a Tom Clancy novel in which the stock market is hacked and records of trading are destroyed. The solution presented in the novel was simplistic but believable... and somehow I doubt that it would work in the real world.

Somehow, I think that the fiercest wars could easily be fought electronically.

I need to think more about this...

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"originated in China"

by seanferd In reply to Canadian Government hacke ...

I hear this a lot. Are we certain? Are the "hackers" clearly identified as foreign and located in China? The government of China, and Chinese criminals certainly do break in to networks. But governments and criminals elsewhere are just as likely to run operations through Chinese network (or any other network which provides obfuscation and misdirection). We never see any testable evidence.

As to insecure government networks"
http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/tr-out-loud/tr-member-appeals-to-canadian-government-to-reorganize-it-and-go-open-source/2576

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As certain as you can be

by JamesRL In reply to "originated in China ...

IPs can be spoofed.

I don't think the Canadian government would be posting their findings unless it was pretty certain. I don't think anyone is accusing the Chinese government, as they wouldn't do it themselves, they would likely hire someone else.

As to Jacqui's article, no one knows the details at this point of how they broke in.

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I included the article as an example

by seanferd In reply to As certain as you can be

of general IT silliness creating vulnerabilities, especially in gov or other networks which are supposed to be secure. I couldn't begin to guess how the break-in was actually done.

It just seems to me that "(someone in) China did it" is a well-worn ploy on the part of organizations which can't or won't investigate further, and don't want to answer any more questions on the topic. All they really need to say, if it is true, is that "We can only trace the intrusion back to a Chinese IP address." If there are further reasons to believe the attack truly originated in China, these should be noted. Otherwise, don't guess in the press. This applies to all sorts of things which, regardless as to the truth of the claims, are expected to be swallowed whole and with finality without any backing.

If they have information which is too "sensitive" to mention, they shouldn't mention anything at all.

My purpose is not to defend China, but to point out the facile use of Chinadidit with absolutely no reason to believe this is actually true.

And I don't have anything against Canada or the Canadian government in particular, either. I'm quite grateful that such a country lives across the lake.

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Story isn't over yet....

by JamesRL In reply to I included the article as ...

http://www2.canada.com/nanaimodailynews/news/story.html?id=4301782

So they have traced some hacking back to the Chinese embassy in Ottawa.

Why the publicity is happening has become clear in the last 24 hours. Someone wishes to publicize the fact that Canada spends a pittance on cybersecurity ($90 million) compared to the US who spends over a billion.

There were hints of this kind of thing by a former official a few months back. The allegations were that the Chinese government was identifying which constituencies in the country had a large Chinese population, and attempting to influence some of the Chinese cultural groups into influencing politicians.

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War? no..

by Neon Samurai In reply to Canadian Government hacke ...

It's not good.. but it's not war either. We don't need armed conflict and solders on the ground. We just need to force manufacturers to deliver better product quality and need organizations to take security seriously. (If our Gov had a golden password then security wasn't taken seriously)

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