China capable of launching cyber attack on UK

March 29th, 2009 - 2:38 pm ICT by ANI  

Gordon Brown London, Mar. 29 (ANI): Intelligence chiefs have cautioned the Gordon Brown Government about the possibility of China launching a cyber attack on Britain’s telecom system.

British Telecom’s new communications network has been installed by Chinese telecom giant ‘Huawei’, which is allegedly funded by Beijing and has links to the People’s Liberation Army.

In case of a war like situation, China could use BT to halt critical services such as power, food and water supplies, Times Online quotes intelligence officials, as saying.

In January, the Chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee, Alex Allan, briefed a ministerial committee led by Home Secretary Jacqui Smith about the threat from China, Whitehall sources have claimed.

Allan then expressed concern because government departments, the intelligence services and the military were all going to use the new BT network.

The ministerial committee on national security was told that Huawei components that form key parts of BT’s new 10 billion pound network might already contain malicious elements waiting to be activated by China.

Experts seconded intelligence chiefs’ warnings.

“If an unauthorised person were able to gain control of the equipment, its mode of operation could be changed. The ability to move traffic across the network could be switched off. Traffic could be re-routed to another node controlled by the attacker,” said John Tindle, professor in telecommunications engineering at Sunderland University.

Chinese hackers have a history of targeting western networks, and the Chinese Army is reputed to hold an annual competition to recruit the country’s best hackers

In 2007, computers at the Foreign Office and other Whitehall departments were attacked by Chinese hackers. Later, the MI5 Director-General Jonathan Evans warned 300 British businesses that they were under Chinese cyber-attack

Two years ago, Chinese Trojan horse spy ware was found in the offices of Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor. (ANI)

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