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Wall Street Journal becomes the latest victim of Chinese hackers

01 Feb 2013
Hacker's hands on keyboard

The Wall Street Journal has reported that it has become the victim of intelligence-gathering attacks by Chinese hackers, just hours after rival paper The New York Times made similar revelations. 

The WSJ said that its systems had been infiltrated by attackers China as part of what it believes to be an intelligence-gathering and monitoring allegations. According to the WSJ report, the attackers were looking to keep tabs on its coverage of China.

The paper, through a statement by parent company Dow Jones, said that it does not believe subscriber data was compromised and the attack does not appear to be an act of financial or commercial fraud. The report suggested that attackers targeting systems at Journal's Beijing bureau offices.

The WSJ claims come after the NYT said it had been the target of a similar intelligence-gathering operation.

Chinese officials have denied any involvement in the incident. But security experts have noted that the attacks are strikingly similar to those carried out in the past by state-sponsored organisations.

Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for security firm Sophos, said that going after those behind the attacks, be they private or state-sponsored, would be a tall order for prosecutors.

"It must be remembered that it is extremely difficult to prove who is behind an internet attack like this," Cluley explained.

"That's because it's so easy to use compromised computers around the world to route attacks through - disguising the true origin."

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Shaun Nichols

Shaun Nichols is the US correspondent for He has been with the company since 2006, originally joining as a news intern at the site's San Francisco offices.

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