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March 29, 2014

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China points finger at US as hacking attacks soar

HACKING attacks on Chinese computers last year increased by more than 60 percent from 2012, the country’s top Internet security agency said yesterday.

Attacks originating from the United States made up a significant proportion of the total, the National Computer Network Emergency Response Coordination Center said.

Beijing and Washington have been squaring off for months over the issue of cyber attacks, each accusing the other of hacking into sensitive government websites.

China has long singled out the US as the top source of intrusion on its computers.

The country’s Internet faces “many security threats,” which creates a “challenge” for China’s overall security, according to the coordination center.

“There are frequent occurrences of state-level organized Internet hacking attacks, and some of our country’s important Internet information systems have been penetrated,” it said in a statement on its website.

Last year 15,000 host computers were taken control of by Trojan horse malware, while 61,000 websites were hijacked as a result of backdoor breaches from overseas, up 62 percent on the previous year, the statement said.

Almost 11 million host computers were hacked by overseas-based servers, mostly from the US, South Korea and Hong Kong, it said.

Servers based in the United States accounted for a third of the total, it said.

Last week, The New York Times and German magazine Der Spiegel said that the US government spied on major Chinese telecommunications firm Huawei Technologies Co.

On Thursday, China’s defense ministry said it would beef up its Internet security in response to the report, but also accused Washington of hypocrisy.

The White House has said  the US does not spy to gain commercial advantage.


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