Security expert Brian Krebs has details of a hacker attack on an Israeli missile defence system, and has claimed that three official contractors have been spiked by hackers and plundered for data.
According to a report on his Krebs on Security, website the attacks happened in 2011 and 2012 and took away ‘huge' amounts of data.
"Three Israeli defence contractors responsible for building the 'Iron Dome' missile shield currently protecting Israel from a barrage of rocket attacks were compromised by hackers and robbed of huge quantities of sensitive documents pertaining to the shield technology, Krebs on Security has learned," he wrote.
"The never-before publicised intrusions illustrate the continued challenges that defence contractors and other companies face in deterring organised cyber adversaries and preventing the theft of proprietary information."
Krebs reports that security firm Cyber Engineering Services, CyberESI, found that hackers, reportedly from China, had successfully attacked three outfits: the Elisra Group, Israel Aerospace Industries, and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems.
One of those firms, Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), dismissed the report in a statement to Krebs, and explained that the issue was dealt with at the time. "The issue was treated as required by the applicable rules and procedures," said a spokesperson.
"The information was reported to the appropriate authorities. IAI undertook corrective actions in order to prevent such incidents in the future."
IAI has provided V3 with additional information, and disputed the information in the Krebs report.
"The information reported regarding the leakage of sensitive information is incorrect," it said in a statement
The publications refer to an attempt to penetrate the Company's civilian non-classified Internet network which allegedly occurred several years ago... IAI's cyber security systems operate in accordance with the most rigorous requirements and also in this case they were proven to be effective."
Last year CyberESI published a ‘red list' of the most targeted entities. Topping that list is defence, but the firm added that any organisation, large or small, could be a target.
Joseph Drissel, CEO, said at the time: "Size doesn't matter when you're looking at cyber attack victim commonalities; the kind of data you have does. What motivates the adversary is the kind of information you deal in and have access to – weapons, communications, energy, policy, and research."
CyberESI told Krebs that the attacks have the hallmarks of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA), and linked them to the five men charged by the USA for espionage.
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