China appears to be attacking everyone who possesses valuable information. The latest companies that report being breached by Chinese hackers are the European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company (EADS), and steel and defense group ThyssenKrupp.
According to German Publication Der Spiegel, EADS – the defense giant that produces drones, spy satellites, the Eurofighter jet, and carrier rockets for France’s nuclear weapons – was penetrated a few months ago.
The German government was alarmed by the news because the organization’s computer networks contain a lot of classified information.
EADS described the attack as being “standard” and insisted that it didn’t cause any damage. However, the company found it important enough to report it to the German government.
As far as steel producer ThyssenKrupp is concerned, the attack, described as “massive” and of a “special quality,” took place in mid-2012. The attackers penetrated deep into the organization’s networks.
While the company couldn’t determine what was copied from their systems, similar to EADS, they also reported the incident to authorities. The attack took place in the US and it was traced back to a Chinese IP address.
In addition, Der Spiegel reports that IBM and pharmaceutical giant Bayer were also targeted.
China has often been named the source of major cyber espionage campaigns. However, after the attacks on The New York Times and other US media organizations, and after security firm Mandiant released its detailed report on the APT1 operation, more and more companies are coming forward to report being attacked by China.
Chinese officials have denied the accusations, arguing that IP addresses are not enough to pinpoint the source of an attack. In addition, Chinese media is calling the behavior of US companies “annoying” and “laughable” because the hacker cases they’ve created are not supported by facts.