Aoquin Dragon from China hacking Australian Government Servers

A newly detected hacking group named Aoquin Dragon from China has been found infiltrating servers from Southeast Asia and Australia. And what’s interesting about this is that the Advanced Persistent Threat(APT) group of actors has been indulging in cyber attacks since 2013 and has reportedly gathered tonnes of classical evidence that can be used against the nation in near future.

Cybersecurity researchers from Sentinel Labs have discovered the digital activities of Aoquin Dragon group and have confirmed that the primary focus of the APT was to conduct espionage on government operations happening across Cambodia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Vietnam, and the Anthony Albanese-led nation.

The infection spread from this threat actors’ group is simple-just sending emails laced with malicious links in the name of decoy documents and then infecting users. The documents can pertain to information shared regarding political parties, some kind of COVID-related content, or some sensitive personal details of female politicians.

Modus operandi of such cyber-criminal gangs is just simple- lure users and trick them into opening weaponized documents. And as soon as they open the document, install a backdoor in their system and then the network and then relay information to remote servers.

Reason for targeting only Australian users is still unknown. But security analysts from Sentinel Labs express their viewpoint that Chinese intelligence has assigned various duties of spying on foreign governments to different threat actors and Aoquin Dragon might be one whose sole purpose is to spy on the Australian government.

Countries like China, Russia, and the United States spy on foreign nations since 2012. National Security Agency of North America was a whistle blown by Edward Snowden in 2013 when he revealed to the world that American governments under the leadership of Barack Obama have been spying on adversary nations since 2009.

China too might have spied on its neighboring countries since the revelation of political and economic motives and so might have strategically assigned duties to hacking groups to gather intelligence about governments operating in Australia.


Naveen Goud
Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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