US accuses China of cybercrime

2012-09-28 14:59
The US Cyber Command's top intelligence officer accused China of persistent efforts to pierce Pentagon computer networks. (AFP)

The US Cyber Command's top intelligence officer accused China of persistent efforts to pierce Pentagon computer networks. (AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Washington - The US Cyber Command's top intelligence officer accused China on Thursday of persistent efforts to pierce Pentagon computer networks and said a proposal was moving forward to boost the cyber command in the US military hierarchy.

"Their level of effort against the Department of Defense is constant" while alleged Chinese attempts to steal corporate trade secrets has been growing, said Rear Admiral Samuel Cox, the command's director of intelligence, after remarks to a forum on the history of cyber threats.

The Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive, a US intelligence arm, said in a landmark report a year ago that "Chinese actors are the world's most persistent perpetrators of economic espionage."

"It's continuing apace," Cox said. "In fact, I'd say it's still accelerating." He accused China of trying to "exfiltrate" Pentagon secrets, jargon for sneaking them out.

Asked whether any classified US networks had been successfully penetrated - something not publicly known to have occurred - Cox replied: "I can't really get into that."

Combatant command

A spokesperson for the Chinese embassy did not immediately respond to a request for comment. In the past, Chinese officials have denied such accusations.

Cyber Command is responsible for defending Defence Department networks as well as mounting any US offensive operations in cyberspace. It was created about two years ago as a unit of the US Strategic Command, the outfit responsible for US nuclear and space operations.

Cox said a proposal was moving forward to elevate the cyber warfare unit to the status of a full unified combatant command. This would put it on the same footing as its parent Strategic Command and the Defence Department's eight other top-level military units.

The matter was headed to the secretary of defence and the president for a decision that possibly would come by the end of the year, he said.

Cox spoke after telling a conference hosted by the Atlantic Council think tank that the overall sophistication and danger of cyber threats is increasing at "an accelerating rate, not a linear rate".

"So the potential for these things to do destructive damage is very high," he said.

The US is among the few countries reliably reported to have mounted a destructive keyboard-launched attack - against Iran's disputed nuclear centrifuges using malicious code known as Stuxnet that surfaced in 2010.

Army General Keith Alexander, who simultaneously heads Cyber Command and the National Security Agency, told a forum in July that unspecified foreign countries, hackers and criminal gangs contributed to a 17-fold jump in cyber attacks on US infrastructure from 2009 to 2011.

Promoting Cyber Command in the military hierarchy would simplify its operations in cyberspace and boost its ability to work directly with US government agencies, allies and coalition partners.

Read more on:    us  |  china  |  cybercrime
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
5 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

Zuma: Pray for peaceful polls

President Jacob Zuma has asked members of the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God to pray for peaceful elections on 7 May.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Friday Grabouw - 11:32 AM
    Road name: N2 Eastbound
    DELAYS between Sir Lowrys Pass and Grabouw
  • Friday Cape Town - 10:14 AM
    Road name: M3 Inbound
    EVENT - left lane closed between Rhodes Avenue and UCT
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Huawei B683 21Mbps 3G Wireless Router

Huawei B683 21Mbps 3G Wireless Router The B683 wireless gateway (hereinafter...

From R1671.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Self-indulgence may be strong today. You may want to enjoy yourself to the fullest and share it with those that make you feel...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.