Occupying the Information High Ground: Chinese Capabilities for Computer Network Operations and Cyber Espionage

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CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, Mar 7, 2012 - Computers - 138 pages
Concern in the United States over alleged Chinese penetrations of both commercial and government networks has only intensified in the past two years as successive incidents have come to light in the media and more organizations voluntarily come forward. The Commission requested a study that both reviewed developments since the 2009 study was completed and examined new issues related to cybersecurity, China, and potential risks to U.S. interests. Specifically, Northrop Grumman information security analysts were tasked by the Commission to address: 1. The state of development in Chinese cyber-warfare strategy including the major military institutions and authors prominent in developing employment concepts and strategic guidance for the People's Liberation Army (PLA); 2. New developments in Chinese practices and capabilities for computer network exploitation to support intelligence penetration and collection against U.S. networks; 3. The potential implications for U.S. military forces in the western Pacific Ocean region, as well as in the continental United States (CONUS) if China staged a network based attack on U.S. systems and infrastructure; 4. The major actors within China (both state-affiliated and state-sponsored) who appear to be engaged in the development computer network operations (CNO) and computer network exploitation (CNE); any identifiable institutional linkages among these groups and government patron organizations supporting them; 5. The activities and research interests of China's most prominent or influential telecommunications research institutes, companies and consortiums and an assessment of any substantive linkages to the PLA, People's Republic of China (PRC) or PRC ministries with security or information technology portfolios; 6. A comparative assessment of the tools and techniques associated with contemporary cyber criminals and with state-sponsored operations originating in China to assess the distinctions that can be drawn in the operations and tools common to cyber criminals and cyber espionage activity; 7. An examination and assessment of the potential network security vulnerabilities, if any, that might be posed by the collaboration between Chinese and U.S. cybersecurity firms.

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