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Operation Aurora: The Worlds First 'Cyber False Flag' Attack?

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posted on Oct, 20 2010 @ 04:06 PM
In a recent thread I posed the question; Are we going to see a 'cyber false flag' event that will give justification for a more censored, mainstream internet service?

It wasn't until today that I remembered an article I had seen which could hold some of the answers to that very question and which perhaps even poses another question; Has a false flag already been attempted?

On January 12, 2010 Google disclosed that it had been subject to a 'cyber attack' that had begun in mid-2009 and continued through till December 2009. The attack had been aimed at dozens of organizations, of which Adobe Systems, Juniper Networks and Rackspace have publicly confirmed that they were targeted. According to media reports, Yahoo, Symantec, Northrop Grumman and Dow Chemical were also among the targets.

The attack was dubbed 'Operation Aurora' after the name of a file folder discovered on the computer of one of the attackers.

Google were quick to state that the attack originated in China, more specifically they narrowed down its point of origin to be two Chinese schools, Shanghai Jiao Tong University and Lanxiang Vocational School.

Google Cyberattack Linked To Two Chinese Schools

Computers at Shanghai Jiaotong University and the Lanxiang Vocational School in China reportedly played a role in the attacks, according to unnamed sources cited in The New York Times.

Lanxiang Vocational School, The New York Times says, was created with funding from the Chinese military and trains computer scientists for the Chinese military. Its network is operated by a company with ties to Baidu, Google's most significant rival in China.

Evidence of the role of the two schools' computers was reportedly presented by a U.S. military contractor at a meeting of security professionals.


This obviously implies that the Chinese Government had some sort of connection to the attacks, even though they emphatically denied any involvement.

While the schools boast of their "high-level talent", it seems unusual that such a sophisticated attack would originate at such a place, as has been pointed out...

While the Chinese authorities have not commented on the report, a female member of staff from Lanxiang told the Guardian that the school was not aware of the attacks on Google.

"We did not know Google was hacked before the New York Times contacted us – when they called, we told them we know nothing but they still made the story up," she said. "Our students are middle school graduates, and we train them to use software like Photoshop. If our students are so skilled they can hack Google, then what are they here for?"


And there is no doubting the level of sophistication of this attack...

Google Hack Attack Was Ultra Sophisticated, New Details Show

Hackers seeking source code from Google, Adobe and dozens of other high-profile companies used unprecedented tactics that combined encryption, stealth programming and an unknown hole in Internet Explorer, according to new details released by the anti-virus firm McAfee.

“We have never ever, outside of the defense industry, seen commercial industrial companies come under that level of sophisticated attack,” says Dmitri Alperovitch, vice president of threat research for McAfee. “It’s totally changing the threat model.”


All of this raises an important question. If the Aurora attacks were indeed sponsored by the Chinese government: why would they choose to launch the attacks from schools to which the government holds close ties? And if the attacks were really that sophisticated, why did they leave a trace at all, especially such an easily definable one?

This brings me to the crux of my theory. Could the attacks have been orchestrated by the US Government themselves and then blamed on the Chinese? Well, Bruce Schneier, a security technologist, seems to think that the U.S were involved...

U.S. enables Chinese hacking of Google

Google made headlines when it went public with the fact that Chinese hackers had penetrated some of its services, such as Gmail, in a politically motivated attempt at intelligence gathering.

The news here isn't that Chinese hackers engage in these activities or that their attempts are technically sophisticated -- we knew that already -- it's that the U.S. government inadvertently aided the hackers.


He believes that the U.S Government have only themselves to blame for the attacks, how so?

Because, he says, some of the same laws that allow authorities to monitor Internet communications promotes criminal misuse. There's the 1994 Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act, which requires phone companies to facilitate FBI eavesdropping. The U.S. government is working on the "Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative," to address cyber-threats, which could give them the ability to police Internet activity and email.

(And then there's the National Security Administration's "Advanced QUestion Answering for INTelligence," or Acquaint project, which is designed to collect data from phone calls, credit card receipts, social networks like Facebook and MySpace, GPS tracks, cell phone geolocation, Internet searches, Amazon book purchases, and E-Z Pass toll records to locate and keep track of people.)


So the reason this attack happened was because the likes of the FBI, CIA and NSA are forcing companies to build 'back door' access systems that allow them to spy on potential threats. It is via these 'back door' systems that these hackers gained access and were able to launch their attack.

So it seems like a never ending circle:

1. The Government, worried about potential threats, puts in place systems to allow them to 'monitor' all internet users.
2. Sophisticated hackers then use these very same systems to initiate cyber attacks.
3. The government then uses such attacks to justify an even more censored/monitored internet.

And before too long the internet as we know it is a mere shadow of it's former self.

Even more unusual is a story that ran in The Financial Times in which an unnamed U.S. security researcher is quoted as saying that the man who wrote the code isn't a "full-time" government worker and did not take part in the attack, but published the attack code to a hackers forum and that the Chinese government therefore had access to the exploit software.

Obviously it is all speculation on my part, but it is surely not beyond the realm of possibilities that someone within the U.S Government with access to these cyber loop-holes posted the appropriate codes anonymously to a Chinese hacking forum, in the knowledge that they would be used against them. As I think about this possibility I am reminded of that quote I have already posted...

“We have never ever, outside of the defence industry, seen commercial industrial companies come under that level of sophisticated attack,”

Well maybe that's just it, maybe these attacks didn't come from outside of the defence industry?

Whether or not the U.S Government were directly involved with Operation Aurora it is true that, as a result of their obsession with wire tapping and digital spying, they are opening themselves up to attack. But perhaps that's exactly what they want?


posted on Oct, 20 2010 @ 04:14 PM
wow, very nice work on this thread
S&F from me

posted on Oct, 20 2010 @ 04:35 PM
True ATS material. Thanks for making this thread.

posted on Oct, 20 2010 @ 04:43 PM
They are redesigning the net and software just like they make new cars - built to break. Then they offer the solution that coincidentally destroys any anonymity and security.

It's just good old fashioned scamming.

Scary part is they do very little to hide their malignant dealings anymore.

posted on Oct, 20 2010 @ 04:49 PM
There is a pattern that they use to both manipulate and cover their tracks .Just like in the vid Censored and the program Sarbanes-Oxley act of 2002! , They mandate the protocols and put in the back door to change the info and sneak out . S&F for your post ...good work .peace

posted on Oct, 20 2010 @ 05:13 PM
reply to post by boondock-saint

Thanks, any particular thoughts on the topic?

posted on Oct, 20 2010 @ 05:54 PM
reply to post by Oozii


reply to post by Asktheanimals

Originally posted by Asktheanimals
They are redesigning the net and software just like they make new cars - built to break. Then they offer the solution that coincidentally destroys any anonymity and security.

It's just good old fashioned scamming.

Scary part is they do very little to hide their malignant dealings anymore.

Yes, very true. Built to break.

Democratic governments around the world -- in Sweden, Canada and the UK, for example -- are rushing to pass laws giving their police new powers of Internet surveillance, in many cases requiring communications system providers to redesign products and services they sell.

Ericsson built this wiretapping capability into Vodafone's products and enabled it only for governments that requested it.

It's getting ridiculous how much of our technology is being specifically built so that it can be used as a spying device if needs be. How can we trust them not to use it 24/7 on innocent citizens? Truth is we can't, as they have already proven themselves unable to stick to the law -

Even the Gary Mckinnon case got me thinking about this very issue, I mean, just look at the supposed information he was able to access over such a long period of time. And that was on a crappy computer he was borrowing from his mother in law!

They want it to fail so that they can then deem the internet 'too dangerous' for us simple folk - leaving it in the hands of only those deemed 'acceptable', the elite.

While we are given a watered down version so that we don't kick up too much of a fuss.

posted on Oct, 20 2010 @ 11:28 PM
hehe ... AURORA funny how that is the word that pops up... Every time they want us to look at something while they do something else... that word pops up! Spy planes to False flags...

The full court press tactics being used to create enough fear to keep public outrcry minimal and justify their next round of restrictions ... ALL TO PROTECT US OF COURSE...

too bad we seem to need protection from those that would control us more than anyone else... that would be a fun research project how many people died of cancer because of radiation testing in the 50's on civilians in several states versus how many americans have been killed by "Terrorists"

posted on Oct, 21 2010 @ 05:22 AM
reply to post by the2ofusr1

Thanks for posting the vid, I'll check it out today. Looks interesting

posted on Oct, 21 2010 @ 04:41 PM
reply to post by LiveForever8

The sad truth is we cannot trust them to not abuse technology. They always do as a matter of course. This is definitely true of the US government and probably most others.
"who? US? spy on citizens!?"......."we'd never do a thing like that"

Yeah, right.....

posted on Oct, 21 2010 @ 05:08 PM
Just so people know Project Aurora was not a spy plane. Project Aurora, Project Medussa and Project Borialis are all a Top Secret project from the NSA and DOD to create microchips used in the SIPRnet (Secret Internet Protocal Router network.) The chips are stream processing engines used by the military in 2004 That are only now being released to the general public as new technology that is really 7 to 8 years old. At that same time the NSA was working with companies like google putting in back doors for spying. The back doors were in and recording all the time but were only supposed to be released with a court order. The Chinese discovered these back doors or easter eggs that were hidden and used it to crack down on there people in China. Even the recent STUXNET attacks on Iran brings up new evidence that poimts to the US. Microsoft knew about the virus for about a year and never fixed it. Many companies did the same thing. A Russian company discovered it and handed it to Kaspersky Antivirus another Russian company to figure out what it is leading to all the press on it. Guess what Kaspersky was hacked yesterday or the day befor. That takes a lot of knowledgr to hack a antivirus company, why would they do it? Retaliation for calling out there virus attacking Irans power plants. The virus even had valid certificates saying the software was safe. The US issues those certificates world wide.Oh why would Microsoft play along with a virus attack. Just recently at the Builderburg meetings Microsoft annouced Windows 8. Thats not the whole story. They announced Windows 8 is now being used by the DOD and the NSA. They are working with Microsoft to add there requirerments to the software? The DOD plans on switching over to the new Microsoft Windows 8 software all through out the military. How is this known. Some dumb Ass at Microsoft or DOD put the PDF files up on the internet and it went out world wide until they relised and killed it. Now they try to say it was just a brief on what to expect in 2011 or 2012 of there next software platfrom.

Don't be fooled the DOD,NSA have taken over the internet in ways you can't imagine. The China thing was China learning about one of the many hidden easter eggs the DOD and NSA have all over.

posted on Oct, 23 2010 @ 07:31 PM
Just heard of Microsoft phone coming soon.
Just giving heads up on new mobile phone threat.

posted on Oct, 23 2010 @ 07:56 PM

The way I see it, there's more to any story when China owns the land.
It really doesn't matter if they hacked anything with or without help.
From a country who buys our bonds and sells us commodities...everywhere.
Flooding the 'free market'.

It's a win/win situation for them.

What about the so-called "Russian and Chinese" hackers in the electrical grid a few years back?
China and Russia hack into US power grid 2009

Cyberspies from China and Russia have hacked into the US electricity grid and hidden software that could be used to disrupt power supplies, according to officials

...Experts fear bugs have been dropped into the system that could be used to disrupt networks at a time of war or crisis. "The Chinese have attempted to map our infrastructure, such as the electrical grid," a senior intelligence official told the Wall Street Journal. "So have the Russians..

How did that die?

Good thread.

posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 12:45 PM
Great post btw S+F........
Seems we are indeed in the process of "False Internet Flag", Stuxnet to name one of the tools created for the purpose of increasing information control to a PTB regulated level.
I believe it will be the start of a 2 tier Internet system.....Government WWW (Sheepweb) and Free Web ( Viral Battle Ground For Freedom Of Knowledge).

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