Chinese hackers attacked Indonesia’s intelligence service

Chinese hackers attacked Indonesia’s intelligence service

A Chinese-linked hacker group has compromised the internal computer networks of at least ten government departments in Indonesia, including the country’s intelligence service (BIN).

The attacks, discovered by specialists from the Insikt Group of the information security company Recorded Future, were allegedly organized by the Chinese APT group Mustang Panda, which specializes in cyber espionage in South-East Asia.

The first attacks were recorded in April this year when researchers found the PlugX malware management server controlled by Mustang Panda. This server maintained communication with hosts within the computer networks of the Indonesian departments.

Experts were able to track the attacks by March 2021. How the attackers managed to penetrate the networks and spread the malware is still unclear.

The Insikt Group team informed the Indonesian authorities of the hack in June and July this year, but the government did not respond to the message.

According to sources familiar with the investigation, the authorities took steps last month to identify and remove malware from infected systems. However, according to Insikt Group specialists, computers on the networks of the Indonesian authorities still respond to Mustang Panda’s servers.

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