In an operation titled “Operation Shady RAT”, initiated by McAfee security professionals, nearly 70 computer networks from both, public and private sector companies, located in 14 different countries, have penetrated by hackers.
Based on news from a report, published on Wednesday, since the last five or six years intelligence data, owned by US International Trade Organization, US defense contractors, accounting companies, government firms and network security agencies, has been hacked, which was believed by researchers to have “been one specific operation conducted by a single actor/group.”
According to the report, China seems to be the main character involved in these attacks since most of the organizations were targeted near the same time, as the 2008 Beijing Olympics, directed by the Asian and Western national Olympic boards, along with the International Olympic board and the World Anti-Doping Agency.
Around 50 of the companies hacked, are from the United States, while 3 victims each were affected in Taiwan, Canada and South Korea. The remaining countries include Denmark, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Indonesia, UK, Singapore, Germany, Switzerland and Vietnam. “I am convinced that every company in every conceivable industry with significant size and valuable intellectual property and trade secrets has been compromised (or will be shortly), with the great majority of the victims rarely discovering the intrusion or its impact,” Dmitri Alperovitch, VP threat research, McAfee, stated in the report.
According to the report, although it may seem like cyber attacks are gradually increasing, such types of hacks have, “occurred relentlessly for at least a half decade.” Hacks by Anonymous and Lulzsec have been primitive and self proclaiming, with the focal reason of gaining popularity. These acts have gained the attention of the public and diverted their interest away from the more critical hack which, “present a far greater threat to companies and governments.”
During the previous month, a cyber security tactic was initiated, by the US Department of Defense, in order to educate the US Armed Forces about cyber security and categorize some of the cyber attacks as a non-aggressive act of war.