How a Chinese Hacker Tried to Blackmail a Top Executive

Picture: Domsama

Slate provides the first-person account of a CEO who received an e-mail with several business documents attached threatening to distribute them to competitors and business partners unless the CEO paid $150,000. “Experts I consulted told me that the hacking probably came from government monitors who wanted extra cash,” writes the CEO, who successfully ended the extortion with an e-mail from the law firm from the bank of his financial partner, refusing payment and adding that the authorities had been notified.

According to the article, IT providers routinely receive phone calls from their service providers if they detect any downtime on the monitors of network traffic installed by the Chinese government, similar to the alerts provided to telecom providers about VoIP fraud on their IP-PBX switches.

“Hundreds of millions of Chinese operate on the Internet without any real sense of privacy, fully aware that a massive eavesdropping apparatus tracks their every communication and move…” writes the CEO. “With China’s world and ours intersecting online, I expect we’ll eventually wonder how we could have been so naive to have assumed that privacy was normal- or that breaches of it were news.”

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  • BuzzCoastin

    > I expect we’ll eventually wonder how we could have been so naive to have assumed that privacy was normal

    there hasn’t been any “privacy” since your birth certificate was issued
    so yeah
    he’s naive to have assumed that privacy was normal

    • Matt Prather

      “There hasn’t been any “privacy” since your birth certificate was issued. So yeah.”

      You’re not being literal or nearly-literal are you? (That’s not literally true or nearly literally true is it?)

      It’s more of a play on words, right?

      I have to ask because I’ve heard conspiracies (not dis-proven, if not proven) that say that our birth certificates can be traded on markets, can serve as collateral for loans, and that our blood taken at birth is indexed and databased.

      • BuzzCoastin

        not sure about They do with the birth certificate
        but it’s the registration of a person with their System
        today you need that document to prove US Citizenship
        and/or obtain a passport
        it’s also the base document for all other documents & records
        that ID you as you in their system

        • Matt Prather

          Thanks for the reply.

          I read your oblique wisdoms and tend to always give them “+1” (WOW AMAZING HOW VALUABLE THAT IS!!)

          I also have the understanding that it’s best not to ask you things directly, since your M.O. is to talk indirectly — I should not ask you to describe the elephants in the room because your M.O. is to always reference the invisible elephants obliquely — but in this case since no one else is in thread or following it (I’m the one person who Disqus-starred the post) I figured I’d test out a direct question to you.

          I like your YouTubes too. A lot.

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