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Hacker website was closed in November 2009

Hacking into a government or business computer system can yield information for hackers that can be sold for significant profit. Hacking attacks around the world have been increasing steadily and many of the attacks are believed to originate inside of China.

The Chinese government maintains that it does not partake in hacking and does not condone the activity within its shores. The highest profile hacking attack in recent memory was the attack on Google and other large companies that allegedly originated in China. In mid-January 2010, Google stated that it was considering leaving the Chinese search market after the attack resulted in the theft of IP. Google cited many ongoing attacks against some of its Gmail accounts owned by activists that speak out against the Chinese government.

Google later said that the attacks on its Chinese office operations might have had assistance from Google employees. The Chinese government and Google have since the attacks been fighting a battle of words with Google threatening to stop censoring its search results and Chinese officials saying they welcomed any company that followed the law.

China has now announced that it has shut down what is believed to be the largest hacker training website in the country.
BBC News reports that the website, called Black Hawk Safety Net, had more than 12,000 paying subscribers and an additional 170,000 that had free accounts. The website allegedly taught hacking techniques and sold malicious software as a download to hackers looking to perpetrate attacks. 

Blogtactic reports that Black Hawk was shut down in November of 2009 and that three of its members were arrested on suspicion of criminal activity. Exactly why the news was just now released is unknown, but it is likely that China is looking to show that it is actively working to reduce attacks that originate inside its country.

Black Hawk isn’t the only website in China that reportedly trains hackers according to testimony given by cyber expert James Mulvenon in 2008 to Congress. Mulvenon believes the Communications Command Academy in Wuhan, China is training hackers as well.



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.GOV
By bhieb on 2/8/2010 11:17:48 AM , Rating: 5
quote:
China has now announced that it has shut down what is believed to be the largest hacker training website


Wonder if it was a .GOV :)




RE: .GOV
By Xenoterranos on 2/8/2010 11:20:33 AM , Rating: 2
Those 12,000 paying subscribers had some balls though. I wouldn't even want to use my home internet connection, much less provide financial information to access a hacking site!


RE: .GOV
By albundy2 on 2/8/2010 12:15:02 PM , Rating: 5
they used your credit card to pay... what did they have to lose?


RE: .GOV
By semiconshawn on 2/8/2010 9:44:19 PM , Rating: 1
6


RE: .GOV
By The0ne on 2/8/2010 12:34:51 PM , Rating: 2
I think you're forgetting that being a hacker in China "might" be a good and endorse sort of thing. So if it's view as "normal" activity and/or if the government doesn't police anything then why not broaden your experience :)

It's probably not so much having the balls to sign up say being view as important for signing up :D Of course this is just PURE speculation. *wink*


RE: .GOV
By drycrust3 on 2/8/10, Rating: 0
RE: .GOV
By Motoman on 2/8/2010 2:34:37 PM , Rating: 5
No, I thought that official websites were .mao


Needs Justification
By gtr32x on 2/8/2010 6:45:06 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Hacking attacks around the world have been increasing steadily and many of the attacks are believed to originate inside of China.


While I understand that in an average Westerner's eyes, China holds nearly no merits, and with good reasons within their breadth of knowledge and information fed. However, such above statements is blatantly an insult to any Chinese. It does not cite a source nor explain why such 'trend' appear so. Is it simply because of the recent 'alleged' attack on Google? Even Google failed to definitively point out who was the real criminal behind the attack. While myself won't deny that it's very likely that the attack did originate from China. What I'm trying to say is, Google is unable to point out whether the attack originated from the government or individuals, and they change their versions along the development of the story. Which to me is very ridiculous.

Note that I am not trying to ask anyone to think good of China. All I'm asking is for a fairer treatment at least on subjects which are not backed up by facts. I don't mind if posts are made with reasonable facts, however, such blatant statements really is an insult. Hopefully the editor considers this in the future. Thanks.




RE: Needs Justification
By drewidgho5t on 2/9/2010 6:52:46 AM , Rating: 2
These things are tracked by police, corporations, UN, INTERPOL etc.

So NO it is not just because of the "alleged" google hack, IT IS A FACT. You probably could have googled a search query such as "top countries for computer espionage" and got all sorts of reference sources. This act is what is known as a crime. Criminal statistics are actively tracked for trends in an attempt to assist law enforcement agencies and independant or private security firms in pursuing and defending against future acts of crime.

In a court of law, a statement does not require corroborating evidence if the fact is widely regarded as common knowledge. ie. Going on the lake ice in late March is a bad idea. No need to get the meteorologists for proof that the ice is likely to be thin. Also, in certain instances a person's past may be used in a supporting capacity to help prove the likelihood of a crime being committed by that person. Successful prosecution may be achieved based on circumstantial evidence alone if there is a reasonable amount of circumstantial evidence. China has long been known as a source of counterfeit merchandise. So China's long history of illegal procurement of intellectual property is in fact enough "proof" to justify these statements. Perhaps not enough to take the government to international court but certainly enough to continue with the negative view many have of the Chinese government.

One further fact you may not be aware of:
************************************************* ***************
The Chinese government recently went "on the record" as stating that it is not in their countries best interest for economic/ social prosperity to honour patents or intellectual property held by other nations and/or companies of those nations.

Let me iterate the above statement. The Chinese government has stated that they have no interest in upholding laws when there is a financial benefit to be gained by their ignoring the law.

Those are the FACTS. I did not provide supporting documentations of proof but that does not mean that my post nor the individual statements within are not valid. If you choose to decide that there is no validity to my post for no other reason than because I did not provide footnotes and source references that is your prerogative. I will state, however, what a sad choice that is to make. To pass up on knowledge because the source (me) did not provide absolute definitive proof of statements is a sad choice for anyone to make.

SO WHAT IS STOPPING YOU FROM PUTTING IN SOME EFFORT YOURSELF TO CONFIRM THE CREDIBILITY OF WHAT THE OTHER POSTERS HAVE WRITTEN???


RE: Needs Justification
By drewidgho5t on 2/9/2010 8:33:07 AM , Rating: 2
QUOTE: While I understand that in an average Westerner's eyes, China holds nearly no merits PROOF?

QUOTE:"within their breadth of knowledge and information fed "==PROOF?

QUOTE"such above statements is blatantly an insult to any Chinese" ==PROOF?

QUOTE"What I'm trying to say is, Google is unable to point out whether the attack originated from the government or individuals, and they change their versions along the development of the story. Which to me is very ridiculous." == You find it ridiculous that Google updates the facts as new information is shed on the events? That is actually quite the responsible thing to do. Maybe Google is trying to not falsely implicate any individuals.

QUOTE "Note that I am not trying to ask anyone to think good of China"
WHAT AN ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTING STATEMENT TO MAKE. Usually an attempt is made to ensure the world does NOT take a negative view of the peoples of a country in light of the behaviour of that countries government. You however suggest that people should not think anything good of the citizens of the People's Republic of China =="I am not trying to ask anyone to think good of China"==but in fact ask that the Chinese government is given "fairer treatment at least on subjects which are not backed up by facts."

I CHOOSE TO CONTINUE THINKING FAIR THOUGHTS OF THE PEOPLE OF THAT NATION AND WILL ALSO CONTINUE TO THINK POORLY OF THEIR GOVERNING INSTITUTIONS

such blatant statements really is an insult. ==As I pointed out in my previous post there are multiple sources for the statistics that are used to support this statement. I think most people would be correct in believing such a statement when its source is INTERPOL or a UN REPORT ON CYBERCRIME.

How someone can view the dissemination of statistics of criminal acts as an insult is a little confusing. Seems to me that you are a lobbyist and or image consultant working on behalf of the Chinese government. To attempt to make people feel guilty by portraying negative statements of the Chinese government as racially insensitive is also ABSOLUTELY GROTESQUE. The world really does not have much reason to have faith in the intent of the Chinese government. The world is also smart enough to know better than to hate on the people of a nation due to the actions of their government. Unless of course we are talking about America, in which case the world has ABSOLUTELY NO HESITATION TO HATE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE FOR THE BEHAVIOUR OF THEIR FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.

QUOTE==While I understand that in an average Westerner's eyes
QUOTE==within their breadth of knowledge and information fed.
You view "westerners" as all having the same thoughts. You further go on to state that to us "Westerners...China holds nearly no merits". Further you imply that our media supplies us limited "breadth of knowledge and information" so as to ensure that we will have a negative view of the Chinese people and the nation as a whole.

You have insulted me, my family, my friends, my nation, all people who are citizens of western nations, (but only the average ones). And through this racist rant of yours, you actually attempt to imply that we westerners are the bigots and the haters.

QUOTE== Hopefully the editor considers this in the future.

At least we agree on that statement.


RE: Needs Justification
By gtr32x on 2/10/2010 8:14:08 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Usually an attempt is made to ensure the world does NOT take a negative view of the peoples of a country in light of the behaviour of that countries government. You however suggest that people should not think anything good of the citizens of the People's Republic of China


I would actually need to say thanks for pointing out where I obviously was not able to deliver what I originally intended. This is what I meant, the people are being discriminated against, whilst it has nothing to do with the people themselves.

quote:
The world really does not have much reason to have faith in the intent of the Chinese government.


I would have no objections to that. In fact there's probably no goverment in the world that we should have good faith in for they have no interest other than the well-being of their own state.

quote:
The world is also smart enough to know better than to hate on the people of a nation due to the actions of their government. Unless of course we are talking about America, in which case the world has ABSOLUTELY NO HESITATION TO HATE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE FOR THE BEHAVIOUR OF THEIR FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.


Unfortunately that's not how the world functions. The world views one particular state at fault and bring the sentiments onto their people. Would be much better if it were not the case however.

quote:
You have insulted me, my family, my friends, my nation, all people who are citizens of western nations, (but only the average ones). And through this racist rant of yours, you actually attempt to imply that we westerners are the bigots and the haters.


I would need to apologize for this. That was how I felt when I first saw the words in the blog too. In fact I am not aiming at this concept of 'westerners.' The reason why I used this particular word is because that's the collaboratively recognized portion of the world that fights with China mutually in the interest of each of their own state affairs. It's just that the 'strategies' they use have brought much wrongful suggestions and judgments on the many topics that are China-related. Which resulted in an extremely poor image of China in the media and among common masses. Of course China is partially at fault here for otherwise the attacks would have no momentum without failing right away. Just to state again, I am in no way implying westerners in general are 'bigots and the haters', but I am implying all those politically active western propagandists are 'bigots and the haters'.

Sorry about the lack of thought put into my initial comment. I was simply too mad by the first glance of the article. No hatred or racism intended. Only intention is to try to ask the world to give a fairer image to the Chinese people.


Something missing
By Uncle on 2/8/2010 2:53:01 PM , Rating: 2
If the government has their hands in everything including censorship of the net. How did this site with this many members not get infiltrated by a paid informant or the rat patrol. Then again we don't know how long it was up and running for. Makes me wonder if their censorship of the net isn't as good as they would like the people to think because it is all controlled by the Thought police(1984).
It would be good to have someone from China explain how VPN or something similar isn't being used.




RE: Something missing
By carage on 2/9/2010 6:33:50 AM , Rating: 2
If you look on Taobao, the Chinese equivalent of eBay, you can find hundreds of VPNs with the cost ranging from 30 to 1000 RMB per month. Service levels varies, a lot of them are unstable, and some of them cooperate with the government by limiting your access to online games only so you can't connect to HTTP.
If someone opts to use one of those non-cooperative VPNs, your ISP could cancel your service at will. The censors aren't stupid, even if they can't see what you see, they could guess there is probably something fishy going on, and in a land that isn't so much into benefit of the doubt and due process, this could happen and did happen.


RE: Something missing
By Uncle on 2/9/2010 2:42:58 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks for the update.


By PAPutzback on 2/8/2010 12:29:50 PM , Rating: 4
Sure they shut down the site, but then they hired the highest top rated members in the forums.




Why the wait on the announcement
By Trisped on 2/8/2010 12:39:21 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Blogtactic reports that Black Hawk was shut down in November of 2009 and that three of its members were arrested on suspicion of criminal activity. Exactly why the news was just now released is unknown,


It is not uncommon to take control of an illegal website and then run it looking for evidence against the users as well as identifiable information. In this way you can learn who participates in the crimes as well as other similar locations.




another PR
By The0ne on 2/8/2010 11:18:03 AM , Rating: 2
The denied, respond with stupid words and always end with someone (innocent or not, working for them or not, etc etc) getting the can. And they still refuse it.

Same old PR over and over again.




By vanionBB on 2/8/2010 12:02:35 PM , Rating: 2
The image used above portrays China as a police state. The image I linked depicts China as a hackers paradise. In C&C Generals, hackers were a critical component to the Chinese economy. Stop using the same tired old picture for everything China!

http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/cnc/images/5/5b/...




So...
By orgy08 on 2/8/2010 1:20:38 PM , Rating: 2
How do we know this wasn't just an easy way to recruit hackers by "shutting them down"? Hack for us or die!




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