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Chinese hackers step up attacks on Indian websites

16 May 2008

Chinese hawkers are targeting Indian sites on a deliberate move to prove their capability and competitiveness. Many Indian sites have suffered causalities following Chinese internet attacks recently.

According to official sources, China has attacked both government and private Indian sites on a daily basis for the last one-and-half years. Websites of Government institutes such as National Informatics Center, top government educational institutes and some of the corporate firms were attacked by the Chinese recently. There are apprehensions that the Chinese are constantly scanning and mapping India’s official networks. This gives them a very good idea of not only the content but also of how to disable the networks or distract them during a conflict.

They had also disabled some of the Indian official websites. There are three main weapons in use against Indian networks - BOTS, key loggers and mapping of networks. It is said that Chinese hackers are using their expertise in setting up BOTS. A BOT is a parasite program embedded in a network and can be used for hijacking the network. This makes other computers act according to its wishes, which, in turn, are controlled by "external" forces.

The controlled computers are known as "zombies" in the colourful language of cyber security, and are a key aspect in cyber warfare. With the Information technology has gained much headway in India and government using computer application for many crucial operations, there are chances that such attacks could make Indian official machinery a standstill for some time.

According to IT experts, hackers are using Key loggers for many attacks. It is software that scans computers and their processes and data the moment you hit a key on the keyboard. This information is immediately carried over to an external controller - so they know even when you change your password. Mapping or scanning networks is done as a prerequisite to modern cyber warfare tactics. MEA has a three-layered system of computer and network usage - only the most open communication is sent on something called "e-grams".





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