China's Deep Strike
Beijing’s latest hack is an unprecedented, broad assault on the West’s computers
During World War II, the Chinese Communists cultivated opium in their base area and trafficked it into Japanese-occupied cities. Mao Zedong’s man in charge was one of the biggest master spies of the period, Li Kenong. Though Mao later regretted cultivating the “special product,” which he called “that certain thing,” the drug caused disruption in the enemy rear and benefitted the Red-area economy.
Now it seems to be applying the same strategy in the West’s rear area, causing disruptions to online systems and simultaneously benefitting the Chinese economy with viruses and worms used to steal information from computer systems worldwide. The latest simultaneous exploit against thousands of organizations, disclosed on March 2, was dubbed the Microsoft Exchange hack, exploiting servers that manage email systems. The hack allows perpetrators to read messages of selected targets and then venture deeper into infected networks.