Chinese Security Researchers Urge Improvements In Cyber Security

{flickr|100|campaign} Over the last few years, China has made rapid strides in information technology. However, China is not immune to threats in the cyber space. Internet security experts in China have emphasized on improvement in cyber security to deal with the growing number of threats. China also faces the challenge of dispelling international suspicions on the countrys involvement in cyber-attacks. Many countries have blamed China for cyber-attacks on computer systems of government bodies, defense departments and industrial facilities.

Recently, security firm McAfee traced attacks on global oil firms to Haze city in Shandong province of China. Earlier, Germany had also raised suspicion on China for cyber-attacks on government bodies. Wen Weiping, of Peking University has cautioned that attackers based in other countries may have hijacked computers in China to launch attacks on other countries. Yuan Peng, Director, Institute of American Studies at China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations has stressed on the need for China to improve the innovative abilities in cyber security. Yuan Peng has also suggested improvement in international communication to dispel the fears of cyber security. U.S has already created a cyber command. Germany and several other countries have initiated the process of establishing a cyber command. United Kingdom (U.K) has increased the funding for cyber security. While other countries opine that China has robust information-warfare strategies, experts have cautioned that China lags behind countries such as U.S and Russia in cyber security.

Countries across the world have witnessed frequent cyber-attacks on government and military establishments. Late Last year, the Chinese Ministry of Public Security had reported that Trojan viruses controlled over 1,27,000 foreign IP addresses during the first half of the previous years and were used in targeted attacks on computers based in China. Government and regulatory authorities must create information security awareness among the public through workshops and e-learning programs. Security professionals must mitigate vulnerabilities in the IT infrastructure through pen testing before their exploitation by cybercriminals.

Many countries have started including cyber experts in their defense forces. Threats in the cyber space have increased the demand for cyber warriors. Government bodies are also organizing cyber security competitions to identify future cyber warriors. They are also encouraging IT professionals to enhance their technical know-how by undertaking vulnerability assessment training and other security certifications.

China has the opportunity to leverage the growing number of IT professionals to make advancements in cyber security. Proactive engagement by China with the international community is crucial to dispel suspicions and to facilitate international agreements on cyber security.