Hackers quietly looting firms

March 14, 2011
Cyber Security, FedCyber Wire
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via Journal Gazette

DuPont, Johnson & Johnson and General Electric are among more than a dozen previously unidentified companies whose networks were broken into in the past two years by hackers intent on stealing some of their most valuable assets, confidential e-mails show.

Some of the attacks mirror the one against Google, which said in January 2010 that it had lost intellectual property assets to hackers from China and that about 20 other companies were victims of the same kind of intrusions.

The attacks are discussed in about 60,000 confidential e-mails that HBGary Inc., a cybersecurity firm hired by some of the companies, said were stolen from it on Feb. 6 and posted on the Internet by a group of hacker-activists known as Anonymous. Other companies attacked include Walt Disney and Sony, the e-mails show.

The incidents described in the stolen e-mails portray industrial espionage by hackers based in China, Russia and other countries. Law enforcement agencies say the attacks have intensified in number and scope in the past two years.

“We are on the losing end of the biggest transfer of wealth through theft and piracy in the history of the planet,” said Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., who chaired a Senate Select Committee on Intelligence task force on U.S. cyber security in 2010. Its classified report addressed weaknesses in network security.

Story here.