Hackers descend upon defense website

Hackers descend upon defense website
Hackers descend upon defense website 

People's Daily Online
November 19, 2009

Hackers are trying to penetrate the website of China's Ministry of 
National Defense and have made more than 2 million attacks on it within 
one month since the site's launch three months ago, People's Daily 
reported Wednesday.

The efforts are seen as a sign of the increasing vulnerability facing 
China's official websites.

"Since the first day the defense ministry website went online, it has 
suffered mass, uninterrupted hacker attacks," Ji Guilin, the editor in 
chief of the website, told the paper in an interview.

There were more than 2.3 million cyber attacks in the first month alone, 
especially in the first week, Ji said, though no damage was done to to 
its operation due to intensified security measures and the back-up 
systems in place.

Ji did not pinpoint the exact origins of the attacks, but he said the 
hackers tried to infiltrate the website ( and cripple its 

The Chinese military, the world's largest with 2.3 million troops, has 
come under frequent accusations of hacking into the websites of foreign 
governments. The Chinese government has rejected any such involvement.

In an interview last month with the International Herald Leader, 
affiliated to the Xinhua News Agency, Ji said the national defense 
ministry website places particular stress on security, and various 
security measures were in place to choke hacker attacks.

"The website seems to be strong in its defense capabilities against 
hackers," Liu Yong, a senior editor of China Security Magazine, said.

The possible motives of hackers trying to break into the website were 
unclear, and the defense ministry declined to speculate.

Fang Binxing, president of Beijing Uni

versity of Posts and Telecommunications and an expert on information 
security technologies, said some hackers are likely to launch attacks 
from outside China for provocation purposes.

"Many are jealous of China's growing prosperity and want to embarrass 
China by attacking some of its popular official websites," he said.

The ministry launched the bilingual website, in Chinese and English, on 
August 20 in a bid to better promote China's national defense and 
downplay the West's fears of China's military modernization drive, the 
defense ministry said.

The launch came just days after the Pentagon unveiled its new website,

China's defense website contains news releases, overviews of defense 
policies and profiles of leaders. It also features audio and video.

Ji said that the site's total number of page views in the first three 
months of trial operations reached 1.25 billion, with up to 40 percent 
of them coming from Beijing, Guangdong and Jiangsu.

Web users from the United States, Australia and Britain made up the most 
hits on the English version of the website, he said, while most overseas 
hits on the Chinese-language site come from the US, Australia, Singapore 
and Japan.

Traffic on the first day reached 70 million users and the next day it 
climbed to 130 million, he said.

"The website is sound in terms of structure, but it lacks in-depth and 
detailed content compared with many non-governmental online forums 
featuring military topics," Hou Lei, a 24-year-old military enthusiast 
in Beijing, said.

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