This just in from The Hill.
Group says China hackers infiltrated Vatican ahead of expected talks
A cybersecurity firm has concluded that Chinese hackers penetrated the Vatican’s computer networks in recent months during the lead-up to negotiations between the Catholic Church and Beijing.
The attack, reported Tuesday by the Massachusetts-based firm Recorded Future, comes as the Chinese government works to strengthen its control over religious groups in the country. It also comes before September negotiations regarding control over the appointment of bishops and the status of churches in China.
The infiltration targeted the Vatican and the Holy See’s Study Mission to China, a group of informal Vatican diplomats based in Hong Kong who have been negotiating the Church’s status in China, and began in early May.
One attack during the campaign was hidden in a fake letter from the Vatican to a Hong Kong chaplain in a particularly sophisticated attempt to replicate a letter from the official stationery of Archbishop Edgar Peña Parra. Recorded Future determined the attack was in all likelihood tied to the upcoming negotiations over the 2018 agreement. [Just recently I had reason to question the legitimacy of a nonsensical letter from an official of the CDF shown to me by a canonist. This happens in all sorts of contexts today.]
The details of the bargain reached two years ago are still largely unknown, but it is believed to have allowed Beijing to name bishop candidates to churches but allowed the pope the final say in the selections.
Recorded Future concluded that the hacking campaign was spearheaded by RedDelta, a state-sponsored Chinese group, and that the tactics mirrored those of other Chinese-approved hacking operations in recent years. However, new techniques and computer code used in the infiltrations made it difficult to discern the source of the hack with 100 percent certainty.
China hacked the Vatican.
Of COURSE. In other news: WATER STILL WET!
I suspect that there is hardly a computer attached to any network controlled by APSA that China doesn’t live in on a daily basis.
The big story would be if China had NOT hacked the Holy See.
China is going to do what its going to do, just like the Scorpion which asked the Frog for a lift across the stream.
A Scorpion, which cannot swim, asks a Frog to carry it across a river on the Frog’s back. The Frog hesitates, afraid of being stung by the Scorpion, but the Scorpion argues that if it did that, they would both drown. The Frog considers this argument sensible and agrees to transport the Scorpion. Midway across the river, the Scorpion stings the Frog anyway, dooming them both. The dying Frog asks the Scorpion why it stung despite knowing the consequence, to which the Scorpion replies: “I couldn’t help it. It’s in my nature.”
The flaw in the analogy is that, in the real world scenario the Frog gets all the way to other bank before the Scorpion stings and there are no consequences for the Scorpion.