30 Sep 2019

Airbus, a European aerospace company, had found itself the victim of several possible Chinese hacker attacks searching for proprietary data and insider secrets. According to sources, AFP spoke to seven security and industry sources, all of whom confirmed a spate of attacks in the past 12 months but asked for anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the information they were sharing. Sources told AFP that the hackers appeared to be interested in technical documents linked to the certification process for different parts of Airbus aircraft, and several stolen documents were related to the turbo-prop engines for the Airbus military transport plane A400M, propulsion systems, and avionics systems that control the plane. “It was very sophisticated and targeted the VPN which connected the company to Airbus,” the source told AFP.

“Very large companies are very well protected, it’s hard to pirate them, so smaller companies are a better target,” says Romain Bottan, an aerospace security specialist for BoostAerospace. “The aerospace sector is the one that suffers most from cyberattacks, mostly through spying or people seeking to make money from this industry.”

According to the anonymous sources, the hackers also targeted Expleo (a French tech consultant firm) and British engine-maker Rolls-Royce. The attack on Expleo was discovered at the end of last year but their system was compromised for much longer, and Belgian aerospace design and manufacturing firm ASCO also had over a month of recovery time due to a malware attack that crippled their IT.

You can read the full Airbus article here at Security Week…

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