Chicom cyber attack on White House nuclear codes?--Obama shrugs?

Bill Gertz:
Hackers linked to China’s government broke into one of the U.S. government’s most sensitive computer networks, breaching a system used by the White House Military Office for nuclear commands, according to defense and intelligence officials familiar with the incident.

One official said the cyber breach was one of Beijing’s most brazen cyber attacks against the United States and highlights a failure of the Obama administration to press China on its persistent cyber attacks.

Disclosure of the cyber attack also comes amid heightened tensions in Asia, as the Pentagon moved two U.S. aircraft carrier strike groups and Marine amphibious units near waters by Japan’s Senkaku islands.

China and Japan—the United States’ closest ally in Asia and a defense treaty partner—are locked in a heated maritime dispute over the Senkakus, which China claims as its territory.

U.S. officials familiar with reports of the White House hacking incident said it took place earlier this month and involved unidentified hackers, believed to have used computer servers in China, who accessed the computer network used by the White House Military Office (WHMO), the president’s military office in charge of some of the government’s most sensitive communications, including strategic nuclear commands. The office also arranges presidential communications and travel, and inter-government teleconferences involving senior policy and intelligence officials.

“This is the most sensitive office in the U.S. government,” said a former senior U.S. intelligence official familiar with the work of the office. “A compromise there would cause grave strategic damage to the United States.”

Security officials are investigating the breach and have not yet determined the damage that may have been caused by the hacking incident, the officials said.

One defense official said there is fairly solid intelligence linking the penetration of the WHMO network to China, and there are indications that the attackers were able to breach the classified network.
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There is much more.

Such cyber attacks are considered an act of war by many and this is one that certainly threatens US national security.  President flexibility evidently does not want to cause alarm about this one either, at least before teh election.  You have to wonder what other attacks he has not reacted to.

China has been in a confrontation with Japan.  Is it trying to determine what our response would be to an attack?  We need to let them know it would be unpleasant for them.

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