Aircraft, weapons data stolen from Australian defense contractor

By Richard Tomkins  |  Oct. 12, 2017 at 10:53 AM
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Oct. 12 (UPI) -- An unidentified hacker stole information on F-35 fighters, P-8 surveillance planes and C-130 aircraft from a small Australian defense sub-contractor.

The hack, which came to light in a threat report from the Australian Cyber Security Center, infiltrated the unidentified company's computer network in July 2016. It was not discovered and reported to the government until November.

About 30 gigabytes of information was purloined. The reported hacking was confirmed on Tuesday by Dan Tehan, the Australian government's minister in charge of cyber security, but he offered no specific details.

Mitchell Clark, response manager of the Australian Signals Directorate, told a conference Wednesday in Sydney, Australia, the targeted company was a small "mum and dad type business" -- an aerospace engineering company with about 50 employees.

"The compromise was extensive and extreme," he said at the Australian Information Security Association national conference. "It included information on the [F-35] Joint Strike Fighter, C130 [Hercules aircraft], the P-8 Poseidon [surveillance aircraft], joint direct attack munition [JDAM smart bomb kits], and a few naval vessels."

"While the Australian company is a national security-linked contractor and the information disclosed was commercially sensitive, it was unclassified," a spokesperson for the ACSC told The Australian. "The government does not intend to discuss further the details of this cyber incident."

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