McAfee Report: Chinese Hackers Attack Oil Companies
February 10, 2011 1:16 PM
comment(s) - last by
Several financial documents, bidding contracts and copied proprietary industrial processes were obtained by the hackers
announced that five multinational gas and oil companies and seven other unidentified companies have had their computer systems broken into by Chinese hackers, where sensitive information such as bidding plans have been stolen.
Dmitri Alperovitch, McAfee's vice president for threat research, named the attacks "Night Dragon" in McAfee's report.
"It speaks to quite a sad state of our critical infrastructure security," said Alperovitch. "These were not sophisticated attacks, yet they were very successful in achieving their goals."
The Night Dragon report did not release the names of the five energy firms, nor did it identify those responsible for the hacking. But the computer security company did report that the hack was traced to China through a server leasing company located in Shandong Province, which hosted the malware. It was also traced to Beijing IP addresses, which were being used between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.
The report notes that the
hackers infiltrated the computer systems
either through public websites or infected e-mails sent to executives within the companies. They have obtained financial documents, bidding contracts and copied proprietary industrial processes.
"Starting in November 2009, coordinated covert and targeted cyberattacks have been conducted against global oil, energy and petrochemical companies," said McAfee in its report. "We have identified the tools, techniques and network activities used in these continuing attacks - which we have dubbed Night Dragon - as originating primarily in China."
The hackers not only
broke into the computer systems
, but also targeted executives and other individuals in Greece, Taiwan, Kazakhstan and the United States in order to obtain confidential information.
"That information is tremendously sensitive and would be worth a huge amount of money to competitors," said Alperovitch.
Alperovitch added that there is no evidence that
is "government sponsored in any way."
China has had quite a past linked to hacks like this, such as the hack on
in December 2009. Chinese hackers broke into Google's network in an attempt to retrieve the e-mail accounts of Chinese human rights activists.
"This is normal business practice in China," said Jim Lewis, a cyber expert with the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank. "It's not always state sponsored. And they do it to each other."
Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu announced at a press briefing in Beijing today that he had no idea that the hack on the five energy companies had even occurred.
"I really have no grasp of this situation, but we frequently hear about
these types of reports
," said Zhaoxu.
The hacks stemming from China has Western companies and governments concerned, but officials say are familiar with these attacks.
"We are aware of these types of threats, but we can't comment specifically about what's in the Night Dragon report," said FBI spokeswoman Jenny Shearer.
Lewis said that Beijing does not arrest hackers very often, but it is "not impossible."
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
2/13/2011 8:25:03 PM
It's also where the first manned spacecraft in human history launched from. Also, the first man-made orbital sat, the first ICBM launch, etc. The Cosmodrome was Russia's, though (Kazakhstan was once part of the USSR).
"Young lady, in this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics!" -- Homer Simpson
Pro-Wikileaks Hacker Group Calls For War Against the UK Government
January 31, 2011, 10:32 AM
Hamburgled: Hackers Nab McDonald's, Walgreen's Email Databases
December 15, 2010, 6:17 PM
Cybersecurity is Everyone's Problem
June 24, 2009, 7:59 AM
Google's Gleaming Glass HQ Gets Mountain View Snub, LinkedIn Gets the Love
May 7, 2015, 6:58 AM
Tech's Tax Day Fortunate Few: Qualcomm, Xerox, GE, et al. Pay Little or No Taxes
April 15, 2015, 11:30 AM
LinkNYC Terminals to Blanket New York City With Free WiFi, Free Calls, and Ads
November 17, 2014, 6:50 PM
Microsoft is Open-Sourcing Most of .NET, Adding OS X and Linux Support
November 12, 2014, 8:27 PM
Home Depot Lost 53 Million Emails, Blames Windows, Buys Execs New Macs
November 9, 2014, 5:00 PM
Former NSA Lawyer: If Google, Apple Encrypt User Data, They’ll Wither on the Vine Like Blackberry
November 6, 2014, 12:15 PM
Most Popular Articles
Windows 10 Hits 75 Million Users; Grows Nearly 4x as Fast as Windows 7
August 28, 2015, 10:22 PM
Kentucky Man Faces up to 10 Years in Prison for Shooting Drone Trespasser
August 13, 2015, 2:58 PM
Microsoft's Flagship Windows10 Lumias Rumored to Pack 25 Minute Charge Times
August 31, 2015, 8:13 PM
"KeyRaider" Hits 225,000+ iPhones, Mobile Malware no Longer Just a Droid Thing
September 1, 2015, 11:50 PM
Microsoft Announces $499 Xbox One "ELITE", w/ High-End Controller, Hybrid HDD
August 31, 2015, 3:29 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Sceptre Airs 27", 120 Hz. 1080p Monitor/HDTV w/ 5 ms Response Time for $220
Dec 3, 2014, 10:32 PM
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2015 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information