5 Dec 2010

Hacking of Google blamed on senior Chinese leader

6:04 pm on 5 December 2010

US diplomatic cables published by WikiLeaks suggest that a senior member of the Chinese leadership was responsible for a hacking attack on the search engine Google, a year ago.

The incident led to the site's withdrawal from mainland China in January.

According to The New York Times on Saturday, the cables say China made repeated and often successful hacking attacks on the United States government, private enterprises and Western allies as far back as 2002.

The Times quoted one cable dated earlier this year as saying: A well-placed contact claims that the Chinese government coordinated the recent intrusions of Google systems.

According to our contact, the closely held operations were directed at the Politburo Standing Committee level.

The paper added that the cable quoted the contact as saying the hacking of Google had been coordinated out of the State Council Information Office with the oversight of two members of the Communist Party's Politburo.

The Times said the cables did not make clear how the cyber attacks blamed on China were coordinated.