Google hackers loosely tied to Chinese government?

Summary:Analysts working for the U.S. government reportedly are close to tying the China hack attacks on Google to two educational institutions, one with ties to the Chinese military.

Analysts working for the U.S. government reportedly are close to tying the China hack attacks on Google to two educational institutions, one with ties to the Chinese military.

The Financial Times reports that contractors have traced the spyware code to Shanghai Jiaotong University and Lanxiang Vocational School. The first one has ties to the military. The schools have denied involvement.

Meanwhile, the New York Times notes:

Security experts caution that it is hard to trace online attacks and that the digital footprints may be a “false flag,” a kind of decoy intended to throw investigators off track.

But those with knowledge of the investigation say there are reliable clues that suggest the highly sophisticated attacks may have originated at Jiaotong and the more obscure campus, Lanxiang Vocational School.

Ultimately, it's doubtful that we'll ever get anything definitive on the subject. It's not like China will agree with whatever the U.S. government investigations finds.

Related: Assessing Google's showdown with China: Does it make sense?

Topics: Government : US, Google, Government, Security

About

Larry Dignan is Editor in Chief of ZDNet and SmartPlanet as well as Editorial Director of ZDNet's sister site TechRepublic. He was most recently Executive Editor of News and Blogs at ZDNet. Prior to that he was executive news editor at eWeek and news editor at Baseline. He also served as the East Coast news editor and finance editor at CN... Full Bio

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