Chinese cyberspies hacked 'all powerful US institutions', say experts

Last Updated: Thu, Feb 21, 2013 08:00 hrs

Chinese cyberspies have penetrated almost all powerful Washington institutions, American security experts have said.

The list of those hacked in recent years includes law firms, think tanks, news organizations, human rights groups, contractors, congressional offices, embassies and federal agencies.

According to security experts, the information compromised by such intrusions would be enough to map how power is exercised in Washington to a remarkably nuanced degree, the Washington Post reports.

The paper pointed out that cyberspying against what could be called the "information industry" differs from hacks against traditional economic targets such as Lockheed Martin, Coca-Cola and Apple.

Computer systems of such firms contain valuable intellectual property that could assist Chinese industrial or military capabilities.

Instead, journalists, lawyers and human rights workers often have access to political actors whose communications could offer insight to Chinese intelligence services eager to understand how Washington works.

Hackers often are searching for the unseen forces that might explain how the administration approaches an issue, experts say, with many Chinese officials presuming that reports by think tanks or news organizations are secretly the work of government officials, much as they would be in Beijing, the paper added. (ANI)

More from Sify: