Guardian Unlimited © Guardian Newspapers Limited 2001
Chinese and American hackers declare
by Sarah Left
Chinese and American hackers have been escalating an online battle to
deface each other's websites by replacing existing content with anti-US or
Friday, May 4 2001 - Chinese and American hackers have been escalating
an online battle to deface each other's websites by replacing existing content
with anti-US or anti-China rhetoric. In the wake of the American spy plane
incident, Chinese hackers vowed to attack US sites, which led hackers in the
US to retaliate.
The US spy plane made an emergency landing on Chinese
soil on April 1 after colliding with a Chinese fighter jet over the South
China sea. The Chinese pilot was killed.
According to UK computer security firm mi2g, the
Honkers Union of China hacking group has defaced more than 80 web sites in
the past month, while the Americans or their allies have attacked more than
Most of the attacks have been minor defacements. The
website for China's remote sensing satellite ground station was overwritten
with a picture of a mushroom cloud. Meanwhile the White House historical association
site was plastered in Chinese flags.
US websites falling victim to the vandals included the
National Institutes of Health, the navy, the department of labour, and the
Californian department of energy, as well as many corporate sites.
A US hackers collective dubbed Project China left a message
on one Chinese site reading: "Get ready to meet a strike force with strength
the world has never seen before! We are going for all-out cyber warfare on
your gov.cn boxes and every other box that you fucks haven't secured!"
mi2g notes that this is not the first time we
have seen a bitter 'cyberwar' between opposing national groups; Israelis and
Palestinians also engage in defacement battles against each other's sites.