The forecast: hot, with a chance of severe data breaches.
According to a government official quoted by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, China is responsible for a breach at the Bureau of Meteorology, which may have allowed attackers to gain access to sensitive national security data. The Australian weather bureau hosts a high-performance computing center used by multiple government agencies and has network connections to Australia’s Department of Defence.
The breach was described as “massive” by the unnamed government official, who told ABC News that he was certain “it was China” that breached the systems. He added that fixing the Bureau of Meteorology’s network to close the holes used to gain access would cost millions of dollars.
There has been no official statement on the breach. Australia’s Federal Police would not comment on the ABC report, and the government has made it a policy not to speak about specific computer security events. A spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry has said the report contains “groundless accusations.”
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