Chinese government hackers steal trove of U.S. Navy data

10 June, 2018, 00:51 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • Report China hacked a Navy contractor and stole huge amounts of sensitive data

Both media outlets cited unnamed officials and the contractor targeted in the cyber attack was not identified by either.

Chinese government hackers breached the files of a U.S. Navy contractor to steal submarine warfare secrets earlier this year, The Washington Post reported Friday.

They indicated that among the material accessed were data relating to a project known as Sea Dragon, as well as information held within the navy submarine development unit's electronic warfare library.

Chinese hackers have for years targeted the USA military to steal information and the Pentagon says they have previously swiped crucial data on the new F-35 stealth fighter, the advanced Patriot PAC-3 missile system and other highly sensitive projects.

The Navy is reportedly investigating the breach with help from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

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The officials spoke to the Post "on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation".

"There are measures in place that require companies to notify the government when a "cyber incident" has occurred that has actual or potential adverse effects on their networks that contain controlled unclassified information", a Navy spokesman said. Bill Speaks was quoted as telling the Post. It did not provide any specifics on the project, saying it was asked by the Navy to withhold the details from the report, so as not to damage United States security further. The news comes as President Donald Trump's administration is seeking to secure Beijing's support in persuading North Korea to give up nuclear weapons, even as tensions persist between the USA and China over trade and defence matters.

USA officials believe China has for years carried out hacking attacks on the US military, the US government and US companies.

Military experts said the breach signaled that China could be working to complicate the Navy's ability to defend US allies in Asia amid a conflict with Beijing in the region. It conducts research and development for submarines and underwater weapons systems.

The Pentagon has not said much about Sea Dragon, launched in 2012, except that it is aimed at adapting existing military technologies to new uses.

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