Friday AM February 11th, 2011

Cybersecurity firm McAfee reports that China-based hackers are hitting global oil and petrochemical companies. Andrew Schneider looks at the scope of the attacks and what companies can do to protect themselves.

computer protectionMcAfee describes the effort as a coordinated campaign to steal intellectual property. Top targets are information on oil and gas field bids and operations. Dave Marcus heads security research for McAfee Labs.

“When you’re in the business of finding oil fields or excavating for oil or looking for things like that and you lose your competitive edge, the damage can be irreparable. I think a lot of companies should be taking this very, very seriously, and they should learn from the mistakes of other companies and make sure you’re protected against this happening against your vector.”

McAfee says the IP source addresses, as well as the tools and methods hackers used, strongly suggest the attacks originated in China. The firm would not name the energy companies subject to the attacks, only that they are based in the U.S., Taiwan, Greece and Kazakhstan.


Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media’s coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas delegations in the U.S. House and Senate, as well as the Texas governorship, the state legislature, and county and city governments. Before taking up his current post, Andrew...

More Information