Jonathan Evans, director-general of Britain’s MI5 security service, has warned of state sponsored espionage by China, targeting key areas of the country’s economy.
In what may well be the first time that the British Government has made direct accusations of web espionage against the Chinese, Evans said that computer systems belonging to financial services firms and large banks may be at particular risk.
MI5 has sent confidential letters to some 300 business leaders and security chiefs, which gives details of the attacks from ‘Chinese state organisations’. The letter details certain ’signatures’ and IP addresses that can be used to identify the origin of the attacks which are coming from ‘custom trojans’.
These trojans have been designed to breach security of specific firms and then report confidential data back to their origin.
No further information is available at this time as a Home Office spokeswoman said, ‘We do not comment on private correspondence’.