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Chinese source told US of hacking efforts: Secret US cable

A Chinese source informed the US embassy in Beijing of widespread efforts by the Chinese government to hack into Google and the computer systems of foreign governments, according to secret US intra-government communications that emerged on Sunday.

world Updated: Nov 29, 2010 16:45 IST

A Chinese source informed the US embassy in Beijing of widespread efforts by the Chinese government to hack into Google and the computer systems of foreign governments, according to secret US intra-government communications that emerged Sunday.

The content of the cable was reported by The New York Times, which obtained thousands of classified documents from WikiLeaks. The newspaper was among the handful of media given access to the documents by WikiLeaks.

The State Department cable was dispatched in January at about the same time Google publicly accused the Chinese government of trying to break into its system and threatened to pull out of the world's most populous market.

According to The New York Times, China's Politburo directed the intrusion of Google's computer systems in the country. The cable was based on a "Chinese contact." The cables said the Google hacking was part of a larger campaign of computer sabotage carried out by government operatives, private security experts and internet outlaws recruited by the Chinese government, the New York Times said.

They also broke into US government computers as well as those of Western European governments, the Dalai Lama and American businesses since 2002, cables said, according to the newspaper.