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April 5, 2010 9:02 PM Subscribe
Canadian researchers have uncovered a vast “Shadow Network” of online espionage based in China that used seemingly harmless means such as e-mail and Twitter to extract highly sensitive data. Stolen documents recovered in a year-long investigation show the hackers have breached the servers of dozens of countries and organizations, taking everything from top-secret files on missile systems in India to confidential visa applications, including those of Canadians travelling abroad.
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The findings, which are part of a report that will be made public today in Toronto, will expose one of the biggest online spy rings ever cracked. Written by researchers at the University of Toronto’s Munk Centre for International Studies
, the Ottawa-based security firm SecDev Group
and the Shadowserver Foundation
, the report is expected to be controversial.
The report is available online:
Shadows in the Cloud: There is an urgent need for a global convention on cyberspace that builds robust mechanisms of information sharing across borders and institutions, defines appropriate rules of the road for engagement in the cyber domain, puts the onus on states to not tolerate or encourage mischievous networks whose activities operate from within their jurisdictions, and protects and preserves this valuable global commons. Until such a normative and policy shift occurs, the shadows in the cloud may grow into a dark, threatening storm.