According to a classified CIA report, intelligence officials believe the Chinese military is planning wide-scale cyber-attacks on American and Taiwanese computer networks, including Internet-linked military systems. The wave of hacking attacks would be launched by Chinese students.
The new CIA report makes it clear that U.S. intelligence are 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. However, the assessment concludes that China does not have the technical sophistication to do broad damage to U.S. and Taiwanese systems.
The Chinese Embassy in Washington insists 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," says Larry Wu, an official in the embassy's science and technology section. "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 U.S. specialists in Chinese security say they see signs that China is researching cyber-war. "We should be very worried about this issue," says James Mulvenon, a China analyst at the Rand Corporation who has done extensive studies into Chinese computer capabilities.
If China makes good on its threat to invade Taiwan, the Chinese military could deploy widespread computer disruptions against American and Taiwanese military systems to slow any effort by U.S. forces to intervene in Taiwan's defense. "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," says the CIA report. "China's virus attack capabilities are similar to those of sophisticated hackers and are limited to temporary disruption of sectors that use the Internet. A Chinese virus attack is capable of reaching e-mail communications, lap tops brought into China, and U.S. Internet-based military computers."
A U.S. intelligence official says, "These aren't the keys to the kingdom we're talking about. There's no danger that the Chinese are going to hack into our nuclear launch codes, but there is the danger they could gather useful intelligence from penetrating some of the less sensitive networks that the Department of Defense utilizes all over the world."
Last year?s U.S. spy plane crash in China triggered about 1,200 Internet attacks against U.S. government and commercial websites that were disrupted or defaced. Many of the attacks appeared to have been generated by students in China, who left pro-China messages or vowed revenge for the death of a Chinese pilot in the plane collision.
The CIA says that hackers in China "appear to be organizing for cyber-attacks again this spring, particularly during student breaks early next month and around the anniversary of the EP-3 [surveillance plane] incident."
The anniversary of the EP-3 collision passed uneventfully this month. But private security groups say they too have picked up on possible Chinese cyberattacks in coming weeks. Michael Cheek, director of intelligence for iDefense, a security intelligence service that has government and corporate clients around the world, says, "We're warning our people about it and making sure everyone has their websites updated with the proper patches."
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UFOs are often seen in areas where weapons are stored?the Roswell case being the most famous example. Since student computers throughout China are being used as weapons of war, it?s not surprising that UFOs have been sighted over Beijing, hovering over the city.
The Beijing Times says that four UFOs surrounded by a bright yellow light were spotted moving in pairs, flying at a height of 6 miles for around an hour.
Lan Songzhu, engineer of the Xinglong Observation Station of Beijing Astronomical Observatory, says there have been more than 10,000 recorded UFO sightings in the last 100 years.
To learn what the U.S. government really knows about UFOs, see ?History Denied? and ?Insider? by Sgt. Clifford Stone,click here.
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