Chi­nese ac­tors gain ac­cess to OPM net­work


The New York Times re­ported re­cently that Chi­nese hack­ers were able to gain ac­cess to the per­sonal in­for­ma­tion of fed­eral em­ploy­ees by break­ing into US Gov­ern­ment com­puter net­works. Ac­cord­ing to the Times, fed­eral of­fi­cials con­firmed that the man­age­ment sys­tem for the Of­fice of Per­son­nel Man­age­ment (OPM) was ac­cessed by hack­ers in March. How the cy­ber crim­i­nals were able to ac­cess the sys­tem was not spec­i­fied, but of­fi­cials be­lieve they were tar­get­ing the files of tens of thou­sands of em­ploy­ees who had pre­vi­ously ap­plied for top-se­cret se­cu­rity clear­ance.

The fact that ma­li­cious Chi­nese ac­tors tar­geted the OPM is es­pe­cially wor­ry­ing be­cause the agency over­sees a sys­tem called e-QIP which con­tains sen­si­tive per­sonal in­for­ma­tion of fed­eral em­ploy­ees ap­ply­ing for se­cu­rity clear­ances, in­clud­ing fi­nan­cial data. Fed­eral em­ploy­ees who have al­ready been granted clear­ances also have in­for­ma­tion stored within the sys­tem and are fre­quently asked to up­date their per­sonal data on the site.

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