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Subject: [IP] more on Chinese hackers

  • From: David Farber <>
  • To:
  • Date: Fri, 25 Nov 2005 21:23:11 -0500

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: 	RE: [IP] Chinese hackers
Date: 	Fri, 25 Nov 2005 21:19:05 -0500
From: 	Bob Frankston <>
CC: 	'Robert J. Wilson' <>

&quot;From the Internet&quot; is an interesting phrase since the Internet is not a
place. The alternative would be to have an infrastructure that is
completely disconnected from the rest of the world and that might even be
more problematic. For that matter one doesn't need a &quot;physical&quot; connection
to be exposed.

Admittedly we are still in a learning phrase and it is wise to be cautious
and use protocols that default to rejecting requests and assure that all
traffic is encrypted.

But that for that to really work it should be the norm for the marketplace
-- trying to create a special regimen for the military is increasingly
problematic as we see Moore's law improvements outside the military.
Instead we find ourselves working at cross-purposes with encryption
discouraged in the civilian marketplace and thus it remains too awkward to
use by normal users or trained experts.

It is better to have these learning experiences than live in a na&#xEF;ve cocoon
never developing defenses. The term &quot;learning experience&quot; isn't just a

-----Original Message-----
From: Dave Farber []
Sent: Friday, November 25, 2005 09:25
Subject: [IP] Chinese hackers

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: 	RE: [IP] Chinese hackers
Date: 	Fri, 25 Nov 2005 09:21:45 -0500
From: 	Robert J. Wilson <>

Can someone explain to me why the people in charge of such important
allow them to be accessed from the Internet in the first place?   One would
have thought that if these things were so important that the last thing
would be allowed would be a physical connection to a computer accessible
from the Internet.

Bob Wilson

-----Original Message-----
From: Dave Farber []
Sent: Friday, 2005-November-25 08:56
Subject: [IP] Chinese hackers

-------- Original Message -------- Subject: Chinese hackers Date: Fri, 25 Nov 2005 04:40:36 -0500 (EST) From: Lynn <> To:,39024655,39154524,00.htm

Chinese hackers breach US military defences
Uncle Sam hacks back in counter attack...

By Tom Espiner

Published: Thursday 24 November 2005

Security experts have revealed tantalising details about a group of
Chinese hackers who are suspected of launching intelligence gathering
attacks against the US government.

The hackers, who are believed to be based in the Chinese province of
Guangdong, are thought to have stolen US military secrets, including
aviation specifications and flight-planning software.

The US government has coined the term 'Titan Rain' to describe the hackers.

Alan Paller, director of the SANS Institute, said: &quot;From the Redstone
Arsenal, home to the Army Aviation and Missile Command, the attackers
grabbed specs for the aviation mission-planning system for Army
helicopters, as well as Falconview 3.2, the flight-planning software used
by the Army and Air Force.&quot;

The team is thought to consist of 20 hackers. Paller claimed the Chinese
government was the most likely recipient of the information they

He told an event at the Department of Trade and Industry on Tuesday: &quot;Of
course it's the government. Governments will pay anything for control of
other governments' computers. All governments will pay anything. It's so
much better than tapping a phone.&quot;

Titan Rain first came to public attention this summer, when the Washington
Post reported that websites in China were being used to target computer
networks in the Defense Department and other US agencies.

Time later reported that Titan Rain had been counter-hacked by a US
security expert called Shawn Carpenter.

The attacks, which are ongoing, were particularly effective on the night
of 1 November, 2004, said Paller, who outlined how the hackers first
scanned then broke into US government computers.

At 22:23(PST) the Titan Rain hackers exploited vulnerabilities at the US
Army Information Systems Engineering Command at Fort Huachuca, Arizona. A
few hours later, at 01:19(PST), they exploited the same hole in computers
at the Defense Information Systems Agency in Arlington, Virginia.

By 03:25(PST) they had hit the Naval Ocean Systems Center, a Defense
Department installation in San Diego, California. Then at 04:46(PST) they
struck again - this time at the United States Army Space and Strategic
Defense installation in Huntsville, Alabama.

The UK is also under intelligence-gathering cyber attack from the far
east, according to the National Infrastructure Security Co-ordination
Centre (NISCC). The government body cannot name the countries concerned as
this may &quot;ruin diplomatic efforts to halt the attacks&quot;, NISCC director
Roger Cummings said on Tuesday.

Tom Espiner writes for ZDNet UK

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