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December 03, 2012

Japan Newest Victim of Espionage via Malware

By Oliver VanDervoort, Contributing Writer

In the Internet age, malware poses a tremendous threat to security. While almost everyone is aware of malware, very few people really understand what that means. Even more people seem to have a real lack of understanding about how they can protect themselves against malware.

The real issue is that while private citizens certainly have reason to be wary, private companies and even government agencies have just as much reason to guard themselves, and sometimes they can be just as lax in their approach to security. 

Image via Shutterstock

Japan is losing the hard way. The Japanese government says that the plans for the country’s latest rockets were stolen off of a laptop that was infected with a particular strain of malware. The computer was located inside the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s Tsukuba Space Center. The laptop was discovered collecting and transmitting data to computers that were located outside the space center. The laptop was eventually disinfected, but not before the rocket plans were stolen.

Thieves now have data on the Epsilon. This particular rocket is solid fuel and is so new that it is actually still under development. This particular rocket is designed to be able to launch satellites and space probes, but can also be used for military purposes. This rocket is also special because it can be controlled from a personal computer.

This kind of espionage is hardly something that is rare in this day and age. Malware has been used on private citizens plenty, but there are plenty of instances of government agencies and private companies being hit by more advanced hackers and programs.

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Edited by Brooke Neuman
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