In an attempt to disrupt Google’s popular mail service in China, a group of unknown hackers made several attempts to break into a number of mail accounts, many of which belonged to senior U.S. government officials, few Chinese activists, journalists, military personnel among others.
Safe, but for how long?
The hackers tried, possibly through phishing, to get through the passwords of the hundreds of users. The motive of that act, at the moment, seems to be to keep a tab on the contents of the user’s mails. Unfortunately for the hackers, Google had previously uncovered a similar campaign, and was therefore better equipped to handle the situation this time around.
The search giant, however, didn’t come out clearly with any names, as to who it thought had channeled the attack. It was quick at detecting the attempts, and foiled the plans, soon enough. Google stresses on the fact that the attack did not have any effects on Google's internal systems, and that the problem lied solely with Gmail's security systems.
The hackers have been traced to the city of Jinan in Shandong province. This bit of information has brought to light the not so good relationship that the search giant shares with China. It hasn’t been long since Google withdrew its services from China due to a string of disputes that kept cropping up at regular intervals with the country’s internet rules.