China paper: Google could be hurt by hacking claim

Jun 06, 2011
In this July 17, 2006 file photo, Google workers walk by a Google sign at company headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. Google says computer hackers in China broke into the Gmail accounts of several hundred people, including senior government officials in the U.S. and political activists. The attacks announced Wednesday, June 1, 2011 on Google's blog aren't believed to be tied to a more sophisticated assault originating from China in late 2009 and early last year. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, File)

(AP) -- The Chinese Communist Party's main newspaper lashed out at Google on Monday, saying its latest complaints of computer hacking traced to China were politically motivated and warning its business might suffer.

"Google's accusations against are fictitious and have ulterior motives and sinister intentions," the People's Daily said in its foreign edition.

The newspaper accused Google Inc. of trying to fan disputes between Beijing and Washington and hamper cooperation in fighting cybercrime.

Google said last week it had traced hacking attacks against the email accounts of several hundred people, including U.S. government officials, military personnel and political activists, to the eastern Chinese city of Jinan. Beijing denied responsibility for the attacks.

" should not be drawn into international political conflicts and serve as a tool for political games, because one fears that if international political winds shift it might be sacrificed and suffer in the marketplace," the editorial said.

Google's relations with Beijing have been chilly since the company, based in Mountain View, California, closed its China search engine last year following a public dispute over censorship that angered Communist leaders.

The company was allowed to keep a network of advertising sales offices in China. But without a local online presence, its share of the Chinese has plunged to 19.2 percent from 35.6 percent in the final quarter of 2009, according to Analysys International, a Beijing research firm.

The FBI has said it is investigating the latest allegations of from China and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton called them "very serious."

Jinan is the site of a military vocational school whose computers were linked to a more sophisticated assault on Google's systems 17 months ago. The two attacks are not believed to be linked.

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