Chinese netizens stunned by alleged New York Times hacking: The SinoFile

The alleged Chinese hacking has threatened more than the New York Times' network -- it's threatened Canadian national security. 

The New York Times headquarters in New York (Haxorjoe).
Some Chinese are surprised to see Beijing's signature invasion of politically sensitive privacy going international, amid accusations that the government hacked The New York Times' network. 
The allegations, which surfaced Wednesday night, maintain The New York Times was subjected to repeated hacking in the four-month period after the publication of an expose on the massive hidden wealth of Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and his family. 

China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei called the accusations "baseless" and remarked that they were provoked by ulterior motives at a routine press conference in Beijing Thursday.


Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei (VOA) 

It seems the US publication -- often criticized by more patriotic Beijing circles for an alleged bias against the Chinese government -- has fallen increasingly out of favor with authorities in recent months. 
After the publication of the expose, in which Shanghai bureau chief David Barboza openly accused Wen of corruption, The New York Times' Web site was blocked in China, and at the end of 2012, Times correspondent Chris Buckley was denied a visa to practice journalism in the People's Republic and had to leave the country
Only a handful of Chinese netizens on Sina Weibo, China's Twitter-like social media site, are discussing the hacking incident. 'Hacking' in Chinese is 黑客 (hei ke, literally 'black/ illegal' 'guest'). 
"The nation's hackers hacked into The New York Times' network. This is the first time I feel this kind of domestic invasion of privacy going abroad," wrote Weibo user Triple Shasha.
But reporters at Western media outlets operating in China -- including colleagues at a news agency I worked with at a non-China bureau -- often claim to have been attacked by Chinese hackers, aiming to restrict international consciousness of Chinese internal affairs. Western reporters in China often receive emails from suspicious parties they believe to be hackers for the government, fishing for passwords or access to databases of investigative reportage. 
And media is only part of the perennial outcry against Online attacks, reportedly perpetrated by Chinese intelligence. Canada's own national security is thought to have been at stake just years ago. 
Beijing was at the center of a scandal in 2011 over allegations from Online security company McAfee that the government was behind a long-term international cyber attack on various governments and companies. 
That same year, Canadian media reported that Chinese hackers had penetrated three key Canadian government departments, including the Department of Defense Research, leaving counter-espionage authorities in a panic, trying to assess the damage to national security. 

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