In recent years US companies such as Google and The New York Times say they have come under attack from Chinese hackers.
The US government also says it is also constantly under attack from Chinese hackers.
There may be a very simple reason all this is happening.
In China, hacking is not something to be ashamed of.
It’s just a job lots of people do, mostly from 9 to 5.
At least, that’s the picture painted by a New York Times article by Edward Wong.
The culture of hacking in China is not confined to top-secret military compounds where hackers carry out orders to pilfer data from foreign governments and corporations.”
Hacking thrives across official, corporate and criminal worlds. Whether it is used to break into private networks, track online dissent back to its source or steal trade secrets, hacking is openly discussed and even promoted at trade shows, inside university classrooms and on Internet forums.
You really should go read the whole thing. In the meantime, here are some stunning facts from Wong’s story:
- Hackers will actually pitch their ability to break into people’s computers out in the open at trade fairs.
- The Ministry of Education and Chinese universities host hacking competitions and invite talent scouts.
- Freelance hackers will help a construction company spy on a rival one week, and help the police shut down dissidents the next.
- Hacking is just a workaday job. American officials say most hacks from there occur between 9am and 5pm Beijing time.
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