Monday, September 10, 2007


New Zealand has been under cyber attack from unknown foreign governments. Government computers have been hacked into by agents of these governments, according to the head of New Zealand's SIS, the Security Intelligence Service in Wellington, New Zealand's capital.

Government department websites have been attacked, information has been stolen, and hard to detect software has been installed that could be used to take control of computer systems, Security Service director Warren Tucker has stated.

Mr Tucker, who has been recently appointed as New Zealand's top spymaster, said there was evidence that foreign governments have been responsible for the attacks. This has been treated as extremely serious.

He will not publicly state which country is responsible, but referred to comments made by the Canadian security service about Chinese spying activities.

Both Russia and China have been implicated in attacks on the British parliament's computer system.

Mr Tucker also noted the bungled attempts by Israeli Mossad agents to secure New Zealand passports back in 2004.

China was accused just last week of hacking into German Government systems and also the Pentagon's computer systems in the US.

The New Zealand SIS and the Government Communications Security Bureau, had responded to the cyber attacks by stepping up a security awareness campaign.

New Zealand is not some idyllic South Seas island in the sun; it is a small but sophisticated first world western nation of four million people quite capable of defending itself in the cyber world.

But after taking all this into account, do we really want to be involved in some free trade agreement with the world's most populous nation which is intent on committing a cyber world version of a 9/11?

I would strongly suggest it is in the best interests of the US to enable free trade agreements to be made between itself and other South Pacific nations.

It must be a real concern that China is gaining political and possible economic influence in the South Pacific region.

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