http://www.siliconvalley.com/mld/siliconvalley/3132466.htm [For a peek at what the Chinese might have in store for a rainy day, you might be interested to look at Unrestricted Warfare, which has been called a blueprint for future Chinese aggression. One just has to hope that if the CIA is right on the money with the prediction of attacks, that U.S. and Allied crackers don't turn this into the pissing match it was this time last year. - WK Unrestricted Warfare: http://www.c4i.org/unrestricted.pdf Cyberwar? More Like Hot Air: http://www.wired.com/news/politics/0,1283,43520,00.html ] By Eric Lichtblau Los Angeles Times Wed, Apr. 24, 2002 WASHINGTON - U.S. intelligence officials believe the Chinese military is working to launch wide-scale cyber-attacks on American and Taiwanese computer networks, including Internet-linked military systems considered vulnerable to sabotage, according to a classified CIA report. Moreover, U.S. authorities are bracing for a possible wave of hacking attacks by Chinese students against the United States in coming weeks, according to the analysis. The confidential alert, which was reviewed by the Los Angeles Times, was sent to intelligence officials a week ago. Although U.S. officials have voiced concerns about individual hackers in China who have defaced federal and private Web sites, the United States has resisted publicly linking the Chinese government to those attacks or to broader cyber-style warfare. Eye on authorities The new CIA report, however, makes clear that U.S. intelligence analysts have become increasingly concerned that authorities in Beijing are actively planning to damage and disrupt U.S. computer systems through the use of Internet hacking and computer viruses. Although the assessment concludes that China has not yet acquired the technical sophistication to do broad damage to U.S. and Taiwanese systems, it maintains that this is the ``intended goal'' of the People's Liberation Army in China. ``The mission of Chinese special forces includes physical sabotage'' of vulnerable systems, the report says -- a sign that some analysts say is driven by China's hostility toward Taiwan. The Chinese Embassy in Washington insisted Wednesday, however, that Beijing is only conducting computer research that is strictly defensive in nature. ``It is not the Chinese government's policy to disrupt the computer system of any other country,'' said Larry Wu, an embassy official. ``We do research on the security of computers, of course -- self-defense to understand how a hacker can get into our computer systems so we can defend it,'' he said. ``But China has never assumed an offensive stance with regards to computer technology.'' But several specialists in security and military affairs said the CIA's conclusions jibe with their own observations about China's research into offensive-minded cyber-tools. ``We should be very worried about this issue,'' said James Mulvenon, a China analyst at the Rand think tank, who has extensively studied Chinese computer capabilities. Taiwan, which China regards as a renegade province, appears to be the driving force behind the Chinese interest in hacking and viruses, Mulvenon said. Under one scenario, if China were to make good on its longstanding threat to invade Taiwan, the Chinese military could then seek to deploy widespread computer disruptions against American and Taiwanese military systems to slow any effort by U.S. forces to intervene in Taiwan's defense, he said. The issue threatens to inflame what are invariably tense relations between the United States and the communist government in China, relations already frayed by a volley of charges and countercharges over alleged nuclear, military and political espionage. Relations hit a low point last year after a U.S. spy plane collided with a Chinese jet fighter, triggering an international standoff over the return of the plane's 24 Navy crew members. China detained them for 11 days and returned the disassembled plane months later. Taiwan factor Recent months have seen a warming in relations as the Bush administration secured China's cooperation in the war on terrorism. But China has become upset by what it sees as the White House's increasingly favorable overtures toward Taiwan. The CIA's assessment discusses both Taiwan and the United States, revealing that U.S. intelligence officials believe both are targets of the Chinese military. ``The People's Liberation Army does not yet have the capability to carry out its intended goal of disrupting Taiwanese military and civilian infrastructures or U.S. military logistics using computer-virus attacks,'' said the CIA. ``China's virus-attack capabilities are similar to those of sophisticated hackers and are limited to temporary disruption of sectors that use the Internet,'' the report said. A government official who also asked not to be identified cautioned, however, that the immediate threat posed by Chinese computer disruptions is fairly limited. ``This is something we're certainly concerned about. But in terms of their being able to disrupt Taiwan or U.S. military and civilian infrastructure, they can't do it yet. That's the story.'' *==============================================================* "Communications without intelligence is noise; Intelligence without communications is irrelevant." Gen Alfred. M. Gray, USMC ================================================================ C4I.org - Computer Security, & Intelligence - http://www.c4i.org *==============================================================* - ISN is currently hosted by Attrition.org To unsubscribe email majordomoat_private with 'unsubscribe isn' in the BODY of the mail.
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