Practice English everyday with VOA Special English

Monday, March 18, 2013 | Latest audio lessons → VOA Learning English

A Plan to Fight Cyber Threats

From VOA Learning English, this is the Technology Report. The United States has announced a plan to fight the growing threat from cyber spies and Internet attackers known as hackers. United States Attorney General Eric Holder says the Justice Department is fighting back aggressively. He says the department is working with states and federal agencies to bring to justice those involved in online theft and espionage.

Mr. Holder called for increased cooperation with private businesses. He also noted the need to protect trade secrets. The attorney general said a single trade secret can be worth millions of dollars. Stolen trade secrets, he said, hurt businesses, jobs and economic competitiveness.

The new policy calls for fines and trade action against individuals and countries that target U.S. trade secrets. The plan was announced the day after the American information security company Mandiant published its investigation of cyber-attacks. It reported that more than 140 companies have been attacked since 2006. The targets include some of the biggest companies in the United States such as Apple, Facebook, Lockheed Martin, and CocaCola.

Mandiant says hacking groups in China carry out most of the attacks. They include groups known as Comment Crew and Shanghai Group. Mandiant also identified something called Advanced Persistent Threat 1, or APT1. It says APT1 is a part of the Chinese military, the People's Liberation Army. Mandiant says the Chinese government also wants to hack into important parts of America's infrastructure. China's Foreign Ministry denies Mandiant's accusations. It calls the report is irresponsible.

For VOA Learning English, I'm Carolyn Presutti. (Adapted from a radio program broadcast 18Feb2013)