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The protection of the constitution warns of hacker attacks from China


According to a confidential report, the agency is monitoring serious attempts at attack against members of parliament, political parties, the federal administration and the armed forces. The goals are e-mail accounts and websites.

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Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution on China: "An extensive arsenal of cyber capabilities"

Photo: Oliver Berg / dpa

The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution warns of hacker attacks by China on German politicians and parties.

"At the moment, Chinese cyberattack groups' investigative activities are on the rise among political bodies in Germany," according to a confidential report by the agency, which SPIEGEL reports on in its current issue.

The attack attempts are therefore directed "against members of parliament and private e-mail accounts of political groups".

E-mail accounts and websites of parties as well as the e-mail addresses of employees of the federal administration and the armed forces are also affected.

The attacks are "to be taken seriously," writes the Office for the Protection of the Constitution.

China has "an extensive arsenal of cyber capabilities."

The ex-member of the Bundestag Margarete Bause, who was the spokeswoman for human rights of the Green parliamentary group until 2021 and who dealt critically with China, recently reported that the Office for the Protection of the Constitution had warned against hacking attempts.

"It was not only about my Bundestag email address and that of my employees, but also about those of my personal environment, friends and family," she said, "Zeit Online".

The European Union had already publicly denounced "malicious cyber activities with significant effects" in the summer.

"They were carried out from the territory of China with the aim of stealing intellectual property and for espionage purposes," said a statement on behalf of the EU and its member states.

The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution had also identified attacks on politicians from February as part of a hacker campaign called ghostwriter, which was controlled by the authorities from Russia.

According to the confidential paper, the private e-mail addresses of "just under a dozen members of the Bundestag and around six dozen members of state parliaments" were attacked by so-called phishing mails.

In "a few isolated cases" the attackers were successful, and "the victims' e-mail accounts were compromised".

The US security company Mandiant, on the other hand, assumes that the ghostwriter campaign is at least partially controlled from Belarus.

There is technical evidence for this, Mandiant announced in November.


Source: spiegel

All tech articles on 2021-12-03

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