Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

5/21/2013 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (

Breach appears to have been aimed at finding identities of Chinese intelligence operatives in U.S.

There's no question they breached Google security years ago. The question arises: What were the Chinese hackers after? According to U.S. officials, it appears that the leak was intended to find the identities of Chinese operatives then living in the United States.

The U.S. government has been concerned about Chinese hacking since at least the early 2000s, when network intrusions were discovered at U.S. energy labs and defense contractors.

The U.S. government has been concerned about Chinese hacking since at least the early 2000s, when network intrusions were discovered at U.S. energy labs and defense contractors.


By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (

5/21/2013 (2 years ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: Chinese hackers, operatives, Google, U.S. officials, counter-espionage

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic online) - The hackers gained access to a sensitive database with years' worth of information about U.S. surveillance targets.

It's not known much the hackers were able to discover. Former U.S. officials familiar with the breach said the Chinese stood to gain valuable intelligence.

The database included information about court orders authorizing surveillance, which could have signaled active espionage investigations into Chinese agents who maintained e-mail accounts through Google's Gmail service.

"Knowing that you were subjects of an investigation allows them to take steps to destroy information, get people out of the country," one former official speaking on the condition of anonymity says. The Chinese could also have sought to deceive U.S. intelligence officials by conveying false or misleading information.

Google did admit to an intrusion by Chinese hackers in 2010, but made no reference to the breach of the database with information on court orders. That breach prompted deep concerns in Washington and led to a heated, months-long dispute between Google and the FBI and Justice Department over whether the FBI could access technical logs and other information about the breach, according to the officials.

A senior Microsoft official suggested last month that Chinese hackers had targeted the company's servers about the same time that Google's system was compromised. Microsoft concluded that whoever was behind the breach was seeking to identify accounts that had been tagged for surveillance by U.S. national security and law enforcement agencies.

"What we found was the attackers were actually looking for the accounts that we had lawful wiretap orders on," David W. Aucsmith, senior director of Microsoft's Institute for Advanced Technology in Governments said.

"If you think about this, this is brilliant counterintelligence," he said in the address. "You have two choices: If you want to find out if your agents, if you will, have been discovered, you can try to break into the FBI to find out that way. Presumably that's difficult. Or you can break into the people that the courts have served paper on and see if you can find it that way. That's essentially what we think they were trolling for, at least in our case."

Microsoft now disputes that its servers had been compromised as part of the cyber-espionage campaign that targeted Google and about 20 other companies.

The U.S. government has been concerned about Chinese hacking since at least the early 2000s, when network intrusions were discovered at U.S. energy labs and defense contractors.


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'

Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2015
That human trafficking, the modern form of slavery, may be eradicated.
Evangelization: That with a missionary spirit the Christian communities of Asia may announce the Gospel to those who are still awaiting it.


More Asia Pacific

Clone livestock, racehorses, the family pet - China opens world's FIRST 'CLONING' FACTORY Watch

Image of The factory will include a 15,000 square meter laboratory, an animal center, a gene bank, and an exhibition hall. The facility is expected to open as soon as within the first six months of 2016.


China, leading the world in cloning technology, is set to open a multi-million dollar facility in order to clone racehorses, livestock, even the family pet. Officials hope that this brings the still-dodgy practice of cloning closer to mainstream respectability. ... continue reading

777 Capt: 'MH370 will be found within the next four to eight weeks' Watch

Image of Ocean Shield, one of the key recovery vessels leading the search for MH370 in the Southern Indian Ocean.


A British pilot has predicted that Malaysian Airlines flight 370 will be found within the next four to eight weeks, based on his careful recreation of the plane's disappearance. The team searching for the plane is expected to move into the area where a mathematical ... continue reading

CONFIRMED: Bones found in Russian mineshaft are of Tsar Nicholas II Watch

Image of DNA testing has conclusively confirmed that human bones found in a Russian mineshaft belonged to onetime Russian leader Nicholas II.


Some of the mystery surrounding Russia's final tsar, has finally been laid to rest. DNA testing has conclusively confirmed that human bones found in a Russian mineshaft belonged to the onetime leader. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - In addition, new samples ... continue reading

Koala baby Imogen - and Internet sensation celebrates her first birthday Watch

Image of Baby Imogen will be celebrating her first birthday with lots of eucalyptus leaves.


Adorable koala baby Imogen is celebrating her first birthday. An Internet sensation, the adorable Koala bear has captivated the world with her struggles to survive after her mother was used as a surrogate for another orphaned koala bear. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading

You've never had Cotton Candy like this before! (Amazing Photo Gallery) Watch

Image of These new concoctions are created through highly detailed, precise work on the part of the confectioner.


Resembling psychedelic works of art, people are uploading pictures of the wacky creations of Chinese candy makers as they kick up the art of cotton candy to a whole new level. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Chinese candy artisans are creating huge, elaborately ... continue reading

You won't believe dying man's final wish - he marries a SEX DOLL Watch

Image of Photos show the unnamed holding his plastic bride, dancing with her in a ballroom and taking a few candid shots of them in front of a make-up mirror.


Whether it's actually true or not is still a matter of debate, but it has the internet community in China buzzing. A 28-year-old man in Beijing, supposedly dying of terminal cancer, has married a sex doll! LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A series of bizarre ... continue reading

Everything you need to know about the controversial Trans-Pacific trade deal Watch

Image of The agreement discourages imports of goods produced by forced labor, requiring members to adopt laws on acceptable working conditions.


It remains to be ratified - but if approved, the Pacific trade deal will free up commerce in 40 percent of the world's economy, particularly in Southeast Asia. Details about the agreement have been released. The agreement is intended to counter China's rising and ... continue reading

The shocking way YOU'RE supporting Christian persecution in Pakistan Watch

Image of Pakistani Muslims burn an image of Our Lady during one of their riots against Christians.


Christians are being slaughtered in Pakistan and the U.S. government continues to prop up the nation, which turns a blind eye to the violence. Because the foreign aid sent to Pakistan comes from taxpayers, you are essentially financing Christian persecution in the ... continue reading

China ends controversial 'one-child policy' after 35 years of extreme population control Watch

Image of


China has made the decision to abandon their "one-child policy." With the controversial law lifted, Chinese couples will now be allowed to have two children. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Communist Party leadership met to discuss the growing concerns over ... continue reading

Two prehistoric lion cubs found - fur and all, in Sakha Republic Watch

Image of Two Eurasian lion cubs were found almost perfectly preserved in the permafrost near Siberia.


An adorable furry face beams up to modern man ten thousand years after it went extinct. Two remarkably preserved prehistoric lion cubs were discovered in the Sakha Republic in Russia over the summer. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The find is significant as ... continue reading

All Asia Pacific News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • President likens Syrian refugees to pilgrims on Mayflower in ...
  • 'Black Friday' leaving bruises as shoppers trample each other for ...
  • Prayer For Courage HD Video
  • Daily Readings for Sunday, November 29, 2015
  • St. Saturninus: Saint of the Day for Sunday, November 29, 2015
  • BIGGER THAN ISIS - There's a hidden power behind ISIS and it's so big ...
  • The Miracle Prayer HD Video

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Daniel 7:15-27
15 'I, Daniel, was deeply disturbed and the visions that passed through ... Read More

Psalm, Daniel 3:82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87
82 Bless the Lord, all the human race: praise and glorify him for ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 21:34-36
34 'Watch yourselves, or your hearts will be coarsened by debauchery and ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 28th, 2015 Image

St. Catherine Laboure
November 28: St. Catherine Laboure, virgin, was born on May 2, ... Read More