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01 August 2012, 10:16

Report: Hackers targeted EU politicians

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Mail icon Chinese hackers have reportedly gained access to emails belonging to the President of the European Union Council, Herman Van Rompuy, and those of other top European politicians, according to Bloomberg. Speaking to the German dpa press agency on Tuesday, the Council (which represents the EU member states) declined to either confirm or deny the attack.

Bloomberg says that its information is based on detailed logs of the incidents that were forwarded to the news services by unnamed US intelligence specialists. The hackers reportedly also targeted investment banks and oil companies, as well as European top politicians and officials.

The activity logs obtained by Bloomberg indicate that the attackers first accessed the European Council's mail server on 8 July 2011. Apparently, intrusions were documented for at least ten days, but could have continued beyond that. The President of the EU Council, Herman Van Rompuy, and the EU’s counter-terrorism coordinator are believed to be among those affected.

"Most private and public organisations are the constant targets of cyber attacks", said the Council. The hackers are thought to have used techniques which were originally developed on behalf of governments. The report says that the Council stores classified information in a separate system without internet access, and that it has tightened its security measures over the past few years.


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