Night Dragon. Operation Aurora. Operation Shady RAT. In the past several years, internet security company McAfee and various media groups have pinned a series of high-profile hacker attacks with names worthy of spy novels on China-based groups.
Yet the attacks differed from the classic spy account in one notable respect: They were directed mainly at commercial, rather than government, secrets. Operation Aurora comprised the well-publicised attacks on Google and two dozen other companies, while Shady RAT included intrusions into more than 70 companies, governments and non-profit organisations. Night Dragon was a series of attacks on global oil, energy and petrochemical companies that sought out exploration details and financial data.
These high-profile attacks were just a tiny sampling of the espionage that companies face each year. The losses companies experience from these attacks are impossible to quantify, said Adam Segal, the Ira A Lipman senior fellow at the Council on Foreign…
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