Once again, everybody is talking about China. On Feb. 19, Mandiant, an American security company issued a startling report — the result of a six-year investigation — that makes the claim that the United Sates is in a cyber war with a 12-story building in Shanghai. The private security analyst concluded that the building is home of China’s stealth cyber war division, the People’s Liberation Army Unit 61398.
If this sounds like the movie, War Games, make no mistake – this is real. According to Mandiant, for the last seven years, Chinese hackers have stolen data from at least 141 companies across 20 major industries, including critical infrastructure sectors like energy and telecommunications. At least 115 of the companies were in the United States. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee said classified intelligence documents support Mandiant’s claim.
Last year, we proclaimed this the Era of Big Data, and, in light of the dramatic events of the last few weeks, we thought it was an appropriate time to consider what’s happened since. In order to understand this from the inside, we invited a leading big data expert, Brian Greenberg, VP of Technology Operations at Total Attorneys and Founder of General System Dynamics, to help us parse fact from fiction or fantasy.