In First, Pentagon Blasts China for Hacks Against US

Says China modernizing military, looking to exploit US weakness

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted May 7, 2013 7:02 AM CDT

(Newser) – The Pentagon is squarely blaming China for hacking into its computer systems, marking the first time the Obama administration has made the accusation. China's spying is aimed in large part at boosting its own defense capabilities, the Pentagon says in its annual report to Congress, per Reuters. Further, China may be seeking to identify US "military capabilities that could be exploited during a crisis," the report says. What's more, the "skills required for these intrusions are similar to those necessary to conduct computer network attacks."

Cyberspying is also probably being used to gather information about US policy plans, the report says, via the New York Times. Last year, China targeted "numerous computer systems around the world." The 83-page document also describes other advancements in China's military, including plans to develop several aircraft carriers. Its first, which could be ready in three or four years, is poised for deployment near territories disputed with Japan, the Philippines, and other countries. The US, meanwhile, is improving its own cyber arsenal.

Chinese military soldiers march past traffic cones outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, Monday, March 4, 2013.
Chinese military soldiers march past traffic cones outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, Monday, March 4, 2013.   (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)
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