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The media has recently been afire with news of the discovery of state-sponsored hacking by the Chinese.  While it has long been hypothesized that hackers – based in China with possible links to the government of the People’s Republic of China – were targeting businesses in the west, the nature of the relationship was unknown and the aims of these hackers unclear. A report released last week by U.S. cyber-security firm Mandiant claims that these hackers in fact comprise a unit of the People’s Liberation Army. If this is true (as the preponderance of evidence in Mandiant report suggests), the implications for western businesses and governments are considerable and will present substantial challenges to both.


A Lesson Never Learnt?

29 May 2012
Written by
Published in Information Security

Since being empowered by the UK parliament in 2010 to levy substantial fines on businesses for data protection breaches, the Information Commissioner’s Office in the UK has been on an apparent crusade, issuing fines with increasing regularity for the loss of even a single record.  In the first couple of months of this year, financial penalties have been levied every few weeks and commentators predict that his trend will continue, with 2012 expected to be a bumper year for ICO scalps.  At the moment, it appears to be the public sector that is bearing the brunt of the ICO’s campaign, with government departments, parts of the health service and local authorities the length and breadth of the UK all coming under the cosh.  However we shouldn’t forget that the ICO’s remit covers all sectors – maybe the public sector is currently seen as easy pickings, but it’s not unreasonable to think that attention will eventually be turned on the private sector.


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