Russia-based Indian Embassy Targeted by Chinese Hackers
The website of the Indian Embassy in Moscow, Russia, has suffered two cyber attacks from the Chinese hackers, said the sources from the Indian Embassy, as per the news published by The Economic Times on April 19, 2010.
According to the sources, the assaults were traced to the servers located in China on both the occasions. However, they refused of leakage of any confidential data that is processed by standalone systems.
The sources also noted that the Local Area Network of the embassy has no direct Internet access and that the firewall protection has been well in place. The sole victim of these hacking attacks was the embassy's official website that is run by the Information Wing. The affected website provides the facility for online filling of applications for passport and visa.
Embassy officials stated that the website indianembassy.ru in the public domain was somewhat affected by the attacks as the e-mail IDs of senior officials were duplicated in gmail or .com domains in a bid to spread malware, as reported by The Economic Times on April 19, 2010. For instance, IDs like 'firstname.lastname@example.org' and 'email@example.com' were found to be used for the legitimate 'infowing@ indianembassy.ru'.
After the recent attacks, the recipients, including Indian journalists in Moscow, received the Daily Media Digest released by the Information Wing on April 18, 2010. The document had a RAR archive arrangement rather than a word document.
Having learnt the matter, a warning was issued by the embassy to avoid opening the attachment and thus, saved several PCs from any fresh malware attack.
However, it is not the first time such an incident has been noticed. Earlier, in their report 'Shadows in the Cloud', US-based Information Warfare Monitor and Canada-based Shadowservers Foundation had blamed Chengdu-based servers in China for hacking confidential information from the Indian computers, which included diplomatic missions of India in London, Washington and Moscow.
In the meantime, Russian media has expressed its worries about the secret and sensitive data regarding the Indo-Russian defence cooperation falling into the hands of Chinese hackers, reported by The Tribune on April 18, 2010.
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