The report cites China’s new J-20 stealth fighter jet as an example. Photos of the J-20 show similarities with the Lockheed Martin F-22. The photos revived “concerns that human, cyber, or other forms of espionage may have played a role in the J-20’s development,” the report says.
The report also notes other examples of “malicious Chinese cyber activity” in 2012, including successful attacks on NASA networks and spear phishing e-mails targeting the White House Military Office, which assists in presidential communications and travel.
Chinese hackers have long appeared less sophisticated than those in Russia. But there are signs that is changing. In January, a China-based attack targeted the "secure authentication" system of the Defense Department's Common Access Card standard, one of the Pentagon's most secure systems.
Moreover, Chinese hackers reportedly used thumb drives and compact discs to infiltrate computers belonging to India's Eastern Naval Command, which had no connection to the Internet. Infiltrating weapons systems, including missiles, aircraft, ships, and ground systems is a Chinese focus, US military officials testified this year.