Computer security company Symanetc believes it has found the hacking group responsible for some of the most well-known cyber-warfare attacks in recent history. According to Reuters, experts at Symantec are calling the group “Hidden Lynx,” and the company believes that this particular group was behind the 2009 Operation Aurora attacks that targeted Google, Yahoo, Adobe and other large tech companies in the U.S.
The Operation Aurora attacks were an attempt to access and edit the source code for apps and Web-based services at those tech companies. The attacks reportedly made use of a vulnerability inside Microsoft’s Internet Explorer Web browser, which then provided a backdoor into that particular machine and then to the locked-down corporate intranets the machines were on.
While the term “hacking” might conjure up images of a small group of people working together in a room, or a few individuals working together remotely, Symantec actually believes that Hidden Lynx is a “professional organization” with as many as 50 to 100 people. While some security companies have pointed fingers at the Chinese government, alleging its involvement, Symantec can’t say for sure if the government was linked to the attacks or not.
For what it’s worth, the Chinese government also denies being involved with the attacks, calling them part of a conspiracy orchestrated by the U.S. government.
At this point, Symantec isn’t sure where which city the group is operating out of or which individuals are involved with it; only that the hackers are likely based in China. We’ll have more for you as new information comes in.