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US, China trade charges on cyberattacks

Published on Feb 20, 2013 5:58 AM
A man walks past a 12-storey building (back centre) alleged in a report on Feb 19, 2013 by the Internet security firm Mandiant as the home of a Chinese military-led hacking group after the firm reportedly traced a host of cyberattacks to the building in Shanghai's northern suburb of Gaoqiao. Mandiant said its hundreds of investigations showed that groups hacking into US newspapers, government agencies, and companies "are based primarily in China and that the Chinese government is aware of them." -- PHOTO : AFP 

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States and China on Tuesday traded charges over cyberattacks after a security firm alleged that Beijing controled hackers who have penetrated the US government, companies and media.

The US firm Mandiant said that cyberattacks had been traced back to a non-descript, 12-storey building on the outskirts of Shanghai, where China's army was believed to be in charge of hundreds if not thousands of hackers.

In a 74-page report, the firm said that the hacking group "APT1" - from the initials "Advanced Persistent Threat" - was believed to be a branch of what is known as Unit 61398 of the People's Liberation Army.

"We believe that APT1 is able to wage such a long-running and extensive cyber espionage campaign in large part because it receives direct government support," Mandiant said.

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