Chinese documentary reveals more than they intended

An interesting article from the Epoch Times:

A standard, even boring, piece of Chinese military propaganda screened in mid-July included what must have been an unintended but nevertheless damaging revelation: shots from a computer screen showing a Chinese military university is engaged in cyberwarfare against entities in the United States.

The documentary itself was otherwise meant as praise to the wisdom and judgment of Chinese military strategists, and a typical condemnation of the United States as an implacable aggressor in the cyber-realm. But the fleeting shots of an apparent China-based cyber-attack somehow made their way into the final cut.

The screenshots appear as B-roll footage in the documentary for six seconds—between 11:04 and 11:10 minutes—showing custom-built Chinese software apparently launching a cyber-attack against the main website of the Falun Gong spiritual practice, by using a compromised IP address belonging to a United States university.

The screenshots show the name of the software and the Chinese university that built it, the Electrical Engineering University of China's People's Liberation Army—direct evidence that the PLA is involved in coding cyber-attack software directed against a Chinese dissident group.
The software window says "Choose Attack Target." The computer operator selects an IP address from a list—it happens to be—and then selects a target. Encoded in the software are the words "Falun Gong website list," showing that attacking Falun Gong websites was built into the software.

China and the United States have consistently engaged in wars of words.  The US military has consistently said that its cyber infrastructure is vulnerable to attack and it lacks the expertise necessary to counter an offensive from another country (they have said that a cyber attack constitutes an act of war, depending on the severity).  Are they really lacking in this arena?  Or are they feinting and lulling opponents into a false sense of security?

China has always denied being an aggressor.  Of course, every country says that and every country spies on each other.  China has always been more open about wielding their capabilities than the United States has.  Back when Google was first hacked in 2010, the attacks were traced back to a couple of universities in China with ties to the military.  They still denied it although later Wikileaks releases confirmed it (in the opinions of US diplomats).  China denied it back then, but the fact that they have software that is designed to attack websites pretty much confirms the fact that they are involved in electronic sabotage.

Or does it?

It was originally believed that the Russian government was involved in DDoS attacks against Estonia in 2007 and Georgia in 2008, but it turned out to be a bunch of patriotic thugs with computer skills who wielded their weapons against their version of traitors.  It could be the same thing here – a bunch of students get together and write software to take down their own political dissidents. 

Maybe they do it for extra credit from their professors.

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