Intel admits to being targeted in January attacks

Among the 34 companies that have been targeted by “sophisticated” attacks in January was Intel. The fact was acknowledged in the company’s annual report for the 2009 fiscal year, in which one of the risk factors named was the following:

“We regularly face attempts by others to gain unauthorized access through the Internet to our information technology systems by, for example, masquerading as authorized users or surreptitious introduction of software. These attempts, which might be the result of industrial or other espionage, or actions by hackers seeking to harm the company, its products, or end users, are sometimes successful.

One recent and sophisticated incident occurred in January 2010 around the same time as the recently publicized security incident reported by Google. We seek to detect and investigate these security incidents and to prevent their recurrence, but in some cases we might be unaware of an incident or its magnitude and effects. The theft and/or unauthorized use or publication of our trade secrets and other confidential business information as a result of such an incident could adversely affect our competitive position and reduce marketplace acceptance of our products.”

According to the Wired, Intel spokesmen Chuck Mulloy says that Intel didn’t experience a broad-based attack of the likes of that which was directed at Google. “Companies routinely see hackers trying to get into their system. It is a risk factor and that’s why it was in the 10-K. We’ve seen no loss of intellectual property as a result of any of these attacks.”

Intel does not claim that the attack was linked in any way to that of Google, just that it happened at the same time.

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