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Cyber-attackers penetrate Australian Central Bank computers

PTI Melbourne | Updated on March 12, 2018

Some of Australian Central Bank’s computers have been hacked, apparently by a Chinese-developed “malware” spy programme, in a series of successful cyber-attacks seeking intelligence on tense 2011 G20 negotiations.

The Reserve Bank of Australia’s some computers had been infiltrated in 2011 by a Chinese-developed “malware” spy programme that was seeking intelligence on sensitive G20 negotiations, ‘The Australian Financial Review’ newspaper said today.

The bank, however, did not comment on what information was stolen, which executives within the bank were targeted, or over what period the assailants had access to its systems.

“As reported in today’s media, the Bank has on occasion been the target of cyber-attacks,” the bank said in a statement confirming that hackers had penetrated it computers.

“The Bank has comprehensive security arrangements in place which have isolated these attacks and ensured that viruses have not been spread across the Bank’s network or systems. At no point have these attacks caused the Bank’s data or information to be lost or its systems to be corrupted.”

The G20 summit in 2011 involved tense negotiations with China over the level of its exchange rate, currency reserves and trade surpluses, which North Atlantic officials argue are being manipulated to China’s advantage.

In March 2011, Paris Match — a French weekly magazine — revealed and the French Government confirmed that over 150 computers in its Ministry of Economy and Finances had been hacked for months before the French-hosted G20 summit in February 2011.

“The targeting of high-profile events, such as the G20, by state-sponsored adversaries, cyber criminals and issue-motivated groups, is a real and persistent threat. The information contained on Government systems relating to high profile events, whether classified or unclassified, can be of strategic interest to cyber intruders,” an Australian Defence Ministry spokesperson said.

Published on March 11, 2013

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