U.S. National Security Agency launched cyberattack on China's Northwestern Polytechnical University: report

2022-09-05 Editor : Zhao Li ECNS App Download

(ECNS) -- The Office of Tailored Access Operations (TAO), the cyber warfare intelligence agency under the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA), was evidenced to have conducted tens of thousands of malicious cyberattacks on Chinese targets, controlling large numbers of network devices to steal high-value data, according to a report jointly released by China’s National Computer Virus Emergency Response Center and internet security company 360 on Monday.

In April, Northwestern Polytechnical University, a leading university for its aviation, aerospace and navigation studies in northwest China’s Xi’an City, announced that Trojan horse programs were discovered within the university’s online system, attempting to illegally obtain permissions, and immediately reported to the local public security bureau.

To investigate the attack, the Response Center and Internet security company 360 jointly formed a technical team to launch a comprehensive, technical analysis of the case.

By extracting several Trojan horse samples from infected information systems and internet terminals at the University, with the support of European and South Asian partners, the technical team identified the cyberattacker as TAO.

The investigation also found that in recent years, TAO had controlled large numbers of network devices, including web servers, internet terminals, network switches, telephone switches, routers, firewalls, and more, to steal more than 140 GB of high value data.

Thirteen people from the U.S. were found to be directly involved in the cyberattack, with more than 60 contracts and 170 electronic documents signed between the NSA and American telecom operators to expand cyberattacks discovered.

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