Second Chinese Hacker Unit Uncovered by Researchers

June 12, 2014 Updated: July 18, 2015

For the last seven years, a unit in China’s military has been stealing from and spying on private industries and government agencies in the United States, Europe, and Japan.

The attacks come from Unit 61486, which is under the main Signals Intelligence collection agency of China’s People’s Liberation Army.

Details of the unit were uncovered by forensic researchers of security company CrowdStrike, who released their findings in a June 9 report. A key role of the unit, they state, “was stealing trade secrets from U.S. defense and European satellite and aerospace industries.”

CrowdStrike’s findings come less than a month after the U.S. Justice Department charged five officers of the Chinese military for their involvement in economic theft from U.S. businesses.

Unit 61486 is now the second major unit of the Chinese military found to be involved in economic theft. The first, whose officers are being charged in U.S. courts, were part of Unit 61398.

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