Google accuses China over Gmail hack attack
By Stewart Mitchell
Posted on 21 Mar 2011 at 08:42
Google has openly accused China of hacking into Gmail – blaming the government for a series of technical glitches that have affected Gmail users in China and elsewhere in Asia.
Google has previously reported that its traffic has been interfered with in China, but has never gone so far as directly accusing the authorities.
However, as complaints over technical glitches and performance issues mount from both end users and advertisers, Google has upped its rhetoric.
"There is no technical issue on our side. We have checked extensively," Google said in a statement quoted by several newspapers. "This is a government blockage carefully designed to look like the problem is with Gmail."
The accusation comes in the wake of a government crackdown aimed at disrupting the so-called “Jasmine Revolution” - a group of online dissidents following in the footsteps of protesters in the Middle East - which Google claims has included online attacks against activists and the online services they use.
“We’ve noticed some highly targeted and apparently politically motivated attacks against our users,” Google said in blog post at the time.
“We believe activists may have been a specific target. We’ve also seen attacks against users of another popular social site. All these attacks abuse a publicly-disclosed MHTML vulnerability - with the Internet Explorer browser affected.”
Google considers these attacks particularly serious because they exploit an entire web service, rather than targeting end-user computers.
“The abuse of this vulnerability is interesting because it represents a new quality in the exploitation of web-level vulnerabilities,” the company said. “To date, similar attacks have focused on directly compromising users' systems, as opposed to leveraging vulnerabilities to interact with web services.”
Is your business a social business? For helpful info and tips visit our hub.
- How Google Glass ruined my lunch hour
- Smartphone battery packs: can a USB power pack beat the festival battery blues?
- Windows Easy Transfer – not so "easy" in Windows 8.1
- Formula 1: what a difference virtualisation makes
- Office of the future: comfy chairs and tablets everywhere
- I went to Glastonbury and the only thing that got high was my smartphone
- Meet the robots helping teach children
- PaperLater: would you pay to print the internet?
- Amazon vs Kobo: how much to make the ebook switch?
- Phishing emails: how I nearly got caught out
- How to write your company's IT security policy
- The key to choosing a secure password
- Please stop reposting fake Facebook messages
- Is Facebook safe for business?
- Don't rely on Chrome's password vault
- Facebook Graph Search: don't panic
- Gmail drafts and Pastebin: could they evade the email snoops?
- Applying for a job at GCHQ? Here's your plain-text password
- Google two-step verification: a must for business email
- Yes, I write down my passwords