No Stone Left Unturned: 'Every Major Company' In US Has Been Hacked By China, Says Former Spy Chief

By @ibtimesau on
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IN PHOTO: A man walks by the poster for the film "The Interview" outside the Alamo Drafthouse theater in Littleton, Colorado December 23, 2014. Sony Pictures said on Tuesday it will release "The Interview" to a limited number of theatres on December 25, less than a week after it cancelled the comedy's release following a devastating cyberattack blamed on North Korea. Sony's about-face came after it absorbed withering criticism, even from President Barack Obama for its decision last week to pull the film, which was seen not only as self-censorship in Hollywood but also caving into hackers working for North Korea. REUTERS/Rick Wilking REUTERS/Rick Wilking

The Chinese government when doing things, really does it bigtime and leaves no stone unturned. A former NSA chief has said that in order to steal valuable secrets, China has entered into and hacked every major American firm it can get its hands into.

During a speech at the University of Missouri on Thursday, March 12, Mike McConnell, who was the director of national intelligence under President George W. Bush, said the Chinese has invented a malware that unfortunately the U.S. wasn’t able to detect. "We've never, ever not found Chinese malware," he said. "The Chinese have penetrated every major corporation of any consequence in the U.S. and taken information."

McConnell said the malware is something China deploys to extract information whenever they want. He said the investigations he had conducted showed China’s hacking victims include the U.S. Congress, Department of Defense, State Department, as well as some major corporations. He disclosed the Chinese had been particularly busy in the final years of the Bush administration, deploying 100,000 hackers just to break and hack into computers.

Just what the hackers working for the Chinese government specifically looted? "Planning information for advanced concepts, windmills, automobiles, airplanes, space ships, manufacturing design and software," McConnell listed. The former NSA chief is worried. "If they can take that, before we can take it to market -- for free -- and it's unchecked for 15, 20 years, I would say that has strategic consequences for the U.S.," he said. 

In 2014, American federal prosecutors slapped criminal charges against five Chinese government spies for stealing valuable information from Alcoa, U.S. Steel Corp., Westinghouse and others. Specifically, they stole:

·         Secret specs of Westinghouse AP1000 power plants, the most high-tech nuclear power plants in the world. Westinghouse is currently building four of them in China.

·         Ransacked SolarWorld computers, swiping information about the solar panel maker's cash flow, manufacturing plans and costs.

·         Broke into PCs at U.S. Steel installed malware and identified computers that control physical access to buildings.

·         Looted the network credentials for nearly every single employee at steelmaker Allegheny Technologies Incorporated.

·         Spied on emails at steel manufacturer Alcoa a few weeks after it partnered with a Chinese state-owned enterprise.

·         Eavesdropped on emails at the United Steelworkers’ union during a trade dispute in China.

 

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