Chinese hackers are on the hunt for new victims as security firms discover its newly-upgraded PlugX malware that takes the form of the trojan virus and phishing scams against diplomatic affairs with China. The new PlugX malware is now more vital than ever as it can evade detection from security firewalls and systems currently present in the industry.

Chinese Hackers
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A rise in hacking activities is observed by security firms globally as Chinese hacking groups are on the move to reign terror over diplomatic cyber engagements with the Asian country of China. The new malware aims to present more elusive characteristics that would give experts a hard time detecting and catching the virus. 

The cyber threats from Chinese hacking groups are becoming more evasive and better than previous versions identified and thwarted by authorities in the past. These hackers are getting more innovative in hiding its true form, waiting for the right opportunity to strike and wreak havoc despite the enormous risks. 

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Chinese APT Hackers: On the Move Against Diplomatic Affairs with Malware

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A participant looks at lines of code on a laptop on the first day of the 28th Chaos Communication Congress (28C3) - Behind Enemy Lines computer hacker conference on December 27, 2011 in Berlin, Germany. The Chaos Computer Club is Europe's biggest network of computer hackers and its annual congress draws up to 3,000 participants.

According to Bank Info Security, Chinese advanced persistent threat groups, or APTs, have begun to move on larger scale attacks that involve international affairs and connections to mainland China. The hackers would not uphold mercy in their attacks that mostly disguises itself as trojan viruses.

Targetting diplomatic missions mean that the groups are focused on swiping confidential and highly sensitive data from international relations and official government transactions. Additionally, the hackers are also intent on monitoring communications that can be used against the concerned parties. 

Security firm Proofpoint noted that the Chinese group known as TA416 is behind the current move that increases the alert and threats present in the cyber community. TA416 recently developed the "PlugX" malware that embodies a remote access Trojan to invade diplomatic systems. 

Chinese APT Hacker's PlugX: Malware Written in Golang Language to Avoid Detection

Proofpoint noted that China's TA416 APT group used new methods to improve the PlugX malware and make it more adept at going around a computer system and remaining undetected on its entire surveillance process. This characteristic is made possible by writing the upgrade in the "Golang" programming language that takes on a novel approach.

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Additionally, this particular programming language is an open-source design that enables users to create reliable and straightforward software. Golang programming language was initially designed by Google's Robert Griesemer, Rob Pike, and Ken Thompson last 2009. 

The group's new PlugX malware began to target diplomatic missions that connect China to the rest of the world, particularly with phishing campaigns that hide on remote access trojans.

According to New York Times' report from Risk IQ, China's TA416 is also known as "Mustang Panda" and "RedDelta," which mainly targets those who have engagements with China in terms of diplomatic affairs. The group was also responsible for last June's attack against the Vatican's computer infrastructures.

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Written by Isaiah Alonzo

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