A report in the Wall Street Journal claimed that cyber-spies had hacked into the Department of Defense’s most expensive project to date, the $300 billion Joint Strike Fighter project. Citing current and former government officials familiar with the attacks, reporters at the Wall Street Journal said the attacks appeared to have originated in China. The Journal report also quoted “a person briefed on the matter” as saying investigators had traced the penetrations back “with a high level of certainty” to known Chinese IP addresses. The WSJ also included excerpts from a Pentagon report that claimed the Chinese military had made “steady progress” in developing online-warfare techniques in an attempt to compensate for an underdeveloped military.
The AFP reports that while fielding questions on the report that appeared in the WSJ, China insisted it was opposed to internet crimes. “Some people keep making up stories, I don’t know what their intentions are,” foreign ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu told the AFP. “We resolutely oppose and crackdown on cyber crimes, including hacking.”
The hacking of the Joint Strike Fighter project has come under scrutiny following a statement from the lead contractor on the project, Lockheed Martin Corp. The company said it believed the WSJ report was “incorrect in its representation of successful cyber attacks” and maintained that to its knowledge there has never been any classified information breach. The Wall Street Journal countered with the fact that at no point did they report that the terabytes of data stolen was classified.