Saturday, January 16, 2010

China, Microsoft, and why you should be afraid

Google getting hacked in China has been all over the Internet this last week. There has been speculation that the Chinese government is the party responsible for hacking Google and up to 30 some firms operating in China.

The initial blame went to Adobe but upon further review it was revealed that the hackers gained access to these systems through a 0 day exploit in the Internet Explorer web browser.

First of all......... Google what are you doing using Internet Explorer at work???

Now we have got that out of the way lets take a look at this a little deeper.

The technology sector moves quick and forgets even faster. Had I not been an open source advocate for over 10 years I probably would have forgotten all about the headlines from 2003-2004 when Microsoft GAVE CHINA A COPY OF THE SOURCE CODE! This has been covered before but everyone in today's tech sector must have just forgot. This attack in China against Internet Explorer should not be a surprise by any means. It most likely took them a few years to review the code to find exploits such as the one that was used to compromise and monitor all of these systems.

This attack was noticed and tracked back to the source ( Chinese Government ). The best hacks are the ones which occur without being detected by the victim. How long would this have gone on if it was not discovered?

Other countries are recommending people get rid of Internet Explorer because it has so many security issues. With the code used for the attacks now available online combined with no fix from Microsoft, when will the rest of the world (specifically the United States) learn from these mistakes and leave Microsoft behind?

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