Recently, a number of major news corporations have revealed that their systems have been hacked by what security researchers are calling Chinese hackers. First, New York Times’ systems were compromised, then Bloomberg News joined the list and now, it has been discovered that Washington Post was also a target of similar attacks back in 2012.
So far, there has been no publicly available proof which suggests that Chinese hackers have perpetuated these attacks. However, the allegation makes sense. Every time a publication has tried to write on the corruption and wealth-amassing of Chinese leaders, their systems have been breached and information related to such articles stolen. This clearly shows that a group of Chinese hackers, probably state-sponsored, has dedicated its energy to such activities.
Washington Post’s systems have been attacked for the last four years, it has been revealed by certain inside sources. However, only last year, did the hackers broke into the newsroom computers. The security trace yielded that the origin of the attack was based in China.
These revelations by news corporations are substantiated by the opinion cited by security companies. According to one such company, Mandiant, Chinese hackers have stolen the personal contact information and other data of more than 30 journalists and executives belonging to Western news organizations.
Most of the journalists who were targeted in these attacks were the ones who would choose to write about China, its leaders or any of the corporate giants hailing from the country. The hacks are apparently meant to keep eyes on the Western media before it goes forth with a contentious piece of news as well as to try and thwart the efforts to publish anything that the Chinese regime may dislike.
Given the fact that most of the evidence found is in the form of digital footprints, it can’t be divulged to the public. That is precisely why none of the affected news corporations have directly blamed the Chinese regime for backing these attacks, even when it is obvious.