Accession Number:



Google Confronts China's Three Warfares

Descriptive Note:

Journal article

Corporate Author:


Personal Author(s):

Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



In early January 2010, Google announced that a computer attack originating from China had penetrated its corporate infrastructure in mid- December and stolen information from its computers, most likely source code. The hackers also accessed the Gmail accounts of some human-rights activists and infiltrated the networks of 33 companies. In April 2010, journalist John Markoff wrote A person with direct knowledge of the investigation now says that the losses included one of Googles crown jewels, a password system that controls access by millions of users worldwide to almost all of the companys Web services, including e-mail and business applications. The program, code named Gaia for the Greek goddess of the earth, was attacked in a lightning raid taking less than two days last December, the person said. Chinas recent incursions into US military computer networks and Googles cyber systems are of concern when viewed in isolation. They reflect a more serious problem when viewed as part of a short-term goal of conducting preemptive reconnaissance that accommodates a longer-term goal of affecting US military planning or the US economy. Many factors indicate that this may be Chinas goal. Initially, this article examines the context within which the Google attacks occurred and how Googles response--abandoning censorship in China--was used by the Chinese to distract attention from their planned aggression. It then analyzes how a 2003 military regulation assisted Chinas response to Googles accusations. In short, these procedures are being used all too often by the Chinese and are causing US authorities to be more and more intolerant of Chinese behavior.

Subject Categories:

  • Information Science

Distribution Statement: