Chinese Hackers Attack The New York TimesPosted: February 6, 2013
The New York Times revealed that it had a cyber security breach. For 4 months Chinese hackers infiltrated The New York Times and gained access to its internal systems.
The malware and computers used were the same as those used by the Chinese military in the past. However, this does not indicate a more widespread cyber attack. The infiltration of The New York Times seems to be a result of a story the paper published in October 2012. The story revealed the immense wealth of Wen Jiabao, the prime minister of China. The expose was a serious hit to Jiabao’s reputation. The only information the hackers seemed to have looked for was related to this story.
The New York Times and its Chinese-language site were both blocked after the article came out. One day after the article came out the hackers began their infiltration.
In the aftermath of the story some of The New York Times’ reporters were forced to leave China. The Chinese government did not renew the visas of these foreign correspondents, and the credentials of other journalists remain pending.
For its part, the Chinese Government has denied any role in this incident (as well as any other cyber-crime).
How important is an open internet, free from government censure or restriction? Should any government infiltrate a news agency if its content is politically subversive? For that matter, should any government monitor, attack or otherwise manipulate people or institutions online? How should American journalists, media conglomerates, and government respond to increasing online threats?