The world wide web of deception

Updated: 2011-12-30 07:57

By An Baijie (China Daily)

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Case File

Information leakage in recent years

In February 2005, a computer virus named MSN sexy chick was alleged to have caused many computers in China to crash. The computer virus spread through instant messaging software like QQ and windows live messenger. Report released by software developer Kingsoft showed that the virus has caused 2.7 million cases of infection. The case also rang the alarm bell regarding safety of instant messaging tools, given its rapid development in China.

In January 2007, a virus named "panda burning joss sticks" stormed through the Internet, causing millions of computers in China to be affected. The virus was named after the icon of a panda holding three joss sticks that appeared on the infected files. The panda virus, with hundreds of mutations in the later period, caught millions of users and anti-virus software providers unaware, largely because it took on a new form of transmission, as anyone logged on websites with the virus could get infected. The maker of the virus, Li Jun, was later sentenced to four years in jail.

On Jan 12, 2009, Baidu, the largest search engine in China, was hacked. The service was stopped for five hours. The Internet giant later said in a statement that its DNS server was hijacked. Baidu then sued the United States-based as it deemed the server provider should be held responsible for the incident.

A report released by the National Computer Network Emergency Response Coordination Center said that government websites were increasingly becoming vulnerable targets of cyber attack. In 2010, there were 4,635 cases of attacks launched against the government website. The victims of cyber attack include the official website of the Ministry of National Defense and the Ministry of Land and Resources.


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