Nortel's internal network "owned" by hackers for almost a decade

By Rick
Feb 14, 2012
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  1. According to the Wall Street Journal, Nortel was unwittingly victimized for nearly 10 years by suspected Chinese hackers with "widespread" access to the company's internal network. The infiltration was so…

    Read the whole story
  2. So he's senior advisor for security while all this is going on and yet he's heading the inquiry into his own failure.
    And in the meantime he's blabbing all to the Wall Street Journal.

    Just makes me think Nortel deserve to be bent over by the Chinese.
  3. Mindwraith

    Mindwraith TS Enthusiast Posts: 186

    inb4 people blindly accusing china without reading the article
  4. ramonsterns

    ramonsterns TS Enthusiast Posts: 744   +12

    The force applied to my forehead via the palm of my hand creates enough kinetic energy to propel a minivan into outer space.
  5. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TS Evangelist Posts: 1,604   +370

    My favourite animal... the scape goat. Well it's an obvious thing to do nowadays isn't it? Hack a machine based in China and the Chinese get blamed. Then the Chinese can say someone hacked our machine from outside and it's not their fault. Other than the hacker, no-one knows the real answer. Hackers win.
  6. I would totally open up an in-depth investigation into this 'senior advisor for security', Brian Shields. This investigation would be so up, close, and personal, that we would feel like someone is watching him when he's going to the bathroom.
    I mean, OMG, he's been there for 19 years, 10 of which the company had been compromised...ON HIS WATCH!...
  7. "So he's senior advisor for security while all this is going on and yet he's heading the inquiry into his own failure.
    And in the meantime he's blabbing all to the Wall Street Journal."

    Surprisingly even if he's a senior advisory, sometimes the people on top will not listen to you. In this case he knew about it, tried to fix it, yet the top is not cooperative with him which results in continued problems with security. It does not mean that you're a senior advisory so you can do anything.
  8. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 1,603   +411

    This is getting pathetic. I don't feel sorry for these companies at all.
  9. dms96960

    dms96960 TS Addict Posts: 253   +28

    You might have missed this part of the article:

    "When the company discovered the breach, a brief investigation was launched and those seven passwords were changed. Shields criticized the company for not doing more and said their own policies got in the way making meaningful changes to their security. Nortel "did nothing from a security standpoint," he said."
  10. Don't blame Brian Shields. As a former Nortel employee myself, you would not believe how many of us attempted to "whistle blow" all types of problems internally at Nortel and were completely shut down by a completely inept Frank Dunn former CEO and before that CFO after John Roth was forced out. Frank Dunn is on trial in Canada now and should go to jail. And where the hell was the George Bush Administration's Security and Exchange watch dog Republican COX from CA while all this was going on in the US? The really, really sad part of this whole story is demise of Bay Networks by their acquisition of Nortel. Bay Networks was on a par with CISCO when that ill-fated acquisition of Nortel took place in 1998-1999.
  11. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 6,964   +355

    @ guest above. I think you may be confusing the word security as in network security and the word securities as in financial instruments and the SEC.
  12. TJGeezer

    TJGeezer TS Enthusiast Posts: 385   +10

    Maybe, but it's an interesting perspective on the Nortel acquisition and its consequences for Bay Networks, which as I recall was well regarded at the time. The picture @Guest paints of capable people watching incompetent executives ignore their recommendations sounds informed, and not all that uncommon. It's what Scott Adams satirizes in "Dilbert" and everybody recognizes it, after all. (Reminds me of how governments behave under neocon "leadership" too, for that matter.) So +1 to @Guest for reminding us that dishonest, deluded or simply incompetent top echelons can sink a company (or a government) no matter how well qualified the advice is that they ignore or bury.
  13. amstech

    amstech TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 1,441   +594

    This type of thing is happening all over the world in thousands of large and small business's.
    Newer types of unnoticable malware infiltrating and re-directing data around even the best firewalls and anti-virus.
  14. Placeholder

    Placeholder TS Rookie Posts: 21

    A very 'Matrix-like' scenario. At what point do the zombies know they are being zombied, and when do you know your hardware isn't multiple-generation compromised, if ever...? Great conspiracy theory stuff.
  15. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 4,573   +65

    In Shields' defense, he seemed to indicate it was Nortel's own policies getting in the way of acting. As someone with such a high-up sounding title though, you might suspect he had some pull though.

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