ASIO targeted by Chinese hackers, blueprints for new building stolen

ASIO targeted by Chinese hackers, blueprints for new building stolen

ASIO’s new building – its blueprints have been allegedly stolen by Chinese hackers (Image: ASIO)

Chinese hackers have managed to steal the blueprints of a new $630 million building that will become home to the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation, according to a report by the ABC’s Four Corners.

The plans, according to the report, include the communications layout of the new building, server locations, and even information about its security system. The stolen data was taken from a contractor involved with the construction; and reportedly trace back to a server in China.

It has been given as one of the reasons why the new building – wit its most sophisticated security features – has been delayed. ASIO was supposed to move in last month, but costs have blown out by $171 million. One security analyst interviewed by the programme said that if the blueprints had been stolen, then it would mean that it would have to gut the building and start again.

“At this stage with construction nearly completed, you have two options. One is to accept it and practice utmost sensitivity even within your own headquarters. The other, which the Americans had to do… back in the late 70s and early 80s was to rip the whole insides and start again,” Des Ball, one of Australia’s leading cyber analysts, told the programme.

The Attorney-General, Mark Dreyfus, refused to comment on the case.

“I’m not going to comment on operational or intelligence matters,” he told the reporter Andrew Fowler.

The very same report also found that there have been major hacks on the Defence Department’s classified email system, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and the Prime Minister’s department.

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