Employees of the US secret service NSA are said to have taken control of parts of the Chinese telecommunications network. This was reported by the Chinese state-sponsored newspaper Global Times on Thursday. According to this, the NSA was able to gain access to a state-financed university via an e-mail phishing attack.
Beijing sees the US agency for cyber warfare, namely the US foreign intelligence agency NSA, as an attacker, the Global Times report shows. A phishing attack on members of Northwestern Polytechnical University had already become known in June 2022. At the time, teachers and students are said to have received e-mails with Trojans that were intended to obtain personal data.
tapping of network data
According to the Global Times, the NSA was able to gain remote access to the university’s core networks and access to the telecommunications operators, the report said. Sensitive data, including network configurations, network management data and operational data, were captured. The Global Times does not reveal how the attackers proceeded in detail and were able to gain access to parts of the Chinese telecommunications network from the university network. However, an analysis of the malware would have shown that the attack went back to the Data Reconnaissance Bureau of the US NSA’s information department.
The Chinese source does not indicate which telecommunications operators were specifically affected. However, the Chinese telecom network is largely in the hands of the three major operators China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom, so one or more of these operators could be suspected to be affected.
Bloomberg made a request to the US foreign intelligence service NSA after it became known. This has not yet been answered, so a statement is still pending.
In recent years, the USA and China have repeatedly accused each other of industrial espionage and, in general, of hacking into networks and spying on data. China is increasingly accusing US government agencies of attacking.
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