Chinese hackers steal US advanced weapons blueprints according to report

It seems you can't go a day without hearing a new report about hackers, whether they're of the annoying Twitter-hijacking variety or the more troublesome DDoSing type. Some, however, are more insidious, including the Iranian hackers who are actively attacking the United States' energy industry. Now a leaked government document shows that Chinese hackers have accessed designs for some of the nation's most advanced weapons.

The information is said to come from a report that was made for the Pentagon detailing a breach of data in which Chinese hackers gained access to the blueprints of advanced US weapons systems. According to The Washington Post, in excess of two dozen "major" systems were compromised, including ones said to be essential to the nation's defense against missiles.

The report was created by the Defense Science Board, which is comprised of a combination of civilian and government experts. Such experts say that the Chinese government getting its hands on such sensitive data as weapons designs could have two-fold ramifications: on one side of the scale, it could fuel China's development of such weapons, and on the other side it could weaken the US' advantage that results from having these systems.

According to officials who are said to have knowledge of the situation, most of these breaches are parts of China's overall cyberattacks that have been hitting companies – particularly of the media variety – for some time now. The attacks are said to be against both the US government's various agencies, as well as its defense contractors.

While specific information on what the hackers acquired isn't available, it is said that the missile system PAC-3, ballistic missile system Terminal High ALtitude Area Defense/THAAD, and ballistic missile defense Aegis of the US Navy were all compromised. Likewise, the F/A-18, Black Hawk heli, V-22 Osprey, and Littoral Combat Ship all had designs compromised.

SOURCE: The Washington Post