Intel was also a victim of a cyberattack at the same time as the high-profile attack on Google, adding it to the list of companies allegedly targeted by Chinese hackers. The company revealed the information Tuesday in its annual filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, noting that the attack could harm Intel's business operations if any intellectual property was stolen.
Intel didn't reveal much more in its filing except to say that a "sophisticated incident" occurred in January, "around the same time as the recently publicized security incident reported by Google." The company said it's investigating the incident, but warned investors that it may not be fully aware yet of the magnitude of what happened. If valuable data was stolen—the company won't say flat out that it has or hasn't been—then it could affect Intel's ability to compete in the market.
What Intel did not say in its filing was whether the attacks came out of China, but it stands to reason that Intel was likely one of the 30+ other companies affected by the China/Google attacks. Intel spokesperson Chuck Mulloy was very careful, in fact, not to imply much of anything about the situation. "The only connection between what we saw in January and the attacks on Google is timing," Mulloy the New York Times, adding that the attacks weren't as broad as the ones described by Google. Because the company is subject to these kinds of attacks fairly often, it may well be coincidence, but we suspected it isn't.
Intel's filing comes just days after US researchers revealed that they discovered the programmer responsible for the code used in the Google attack. Without releasing his name (or their own, for that matter), the researchers said that the programmer in question was not responsible for carrying out the attacks, and that he was just a freelancer who happened to be working with the Chinese government. But, as various security experts have pointed out, further research into the origins of the attack won't be possible without the cooperation of the Chinese government, which has been difficult—to say the least—to obtain thus far.
Source: ars technica