Security Woes Deepen: Japanese Embassies Targeted With Malware

Type threatpost
Reporter Brian Donohue
Modified 2013-04-17T20:07:05


There are new reports that dozens of diplomatic computers Japanese embassies abroad were infected with malware this Summer. The news comes on the heels of recent news about malicious software attacks on Japanese defense contractors and the Japanese Parliament.

A report in a local Japanese publication, The Daily Yomiuri, places the infected diplomatic computers in Canada, China, France, Myanmar, the Netherlands, South Korea, and the United States. Yomiuri reports that investigations into the matter are ongoing, and that the list of affected embassies may increase in the coming days.

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Reports say that investigators believe the attack originated with an infection at the Japanese embassy in Seoul, South Korea. At least one government official has admitted that the infections are the likely result of highly targeted spear-phishing campaigns that took place in May and June of this year, Yomiuri reports.

The timing and description of the attacks share similarities with the recently disclosed attacks on that country’s Lower House of Parliament in July and August, as well as on defense contractor Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. On Wednesday, the Chief Cabinet Secretary, Osamu Fujimuram, stated that no confidential information has been leaked as a result of the recent attacks against the foreign ministry, though similar assurances were made after the attack on Japan’s defense industry in September.