Microsoft Condemns Attack on Google, Doesn't Back Google on Leaving China
Article by George Norman
On 15 Jan 2010
Google recently announced that it has been forced to reconsider its operation in China because its corporate infrastructure was hit by a highly sophisticated and targeted attack and because China keeps trying to limit free speech on the web. Google.cn has to censor search results because that’s the norm in China. After the attack Google said that enough is enough and that it doesn’t want to censor search results anymore. If that goes against the law in China and if an agreement with the Chinese authorities cannot be reached, then Google may very well leave the Chinese market.

Google’s stand has received support from the White House. On Thursday, the White House says it is on the same page with Google in regards to censoring search results. Regarding the attacks on Google (and numerous other organizations), the White House said that US diplomats are trying to get a clear answer from China.

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Microsoft has also shown its support by condemning the attack – attack which by the way has been helped by a security hole in Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browser. Microsoft confirmed that a remote code execution vulnerability in IE was one of the vectors used in the targeted and sophisticated attack against Google.

“Unfortunately cyber crime and cyber attacks are daily occurrences in the online world. We condemn these attacks and the recent attacks against Google and other companies. At this time, we have no indication that Microsoft’s corporate network or our mail properties were attacked as part of these attacks,” said Director, Microsoft Security Response, Mike Reavey.

And that is where Microsoft’s support ends. The Redmond-based software giant will not support Google in its decision to leave the Chinese market. Even though Google is threatening to pull out, Microsoft will not follow suit.

"There are attacks every day. I don't think there was anything unusual, so I don't understand. We're attacked every day from all parts of the world and I think everybody else is too. We didn't see anything out of the ordinary, " said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer in an interview with Reuters, after a meeting on modernizing government services at the White House.



Tags: Microsoft, Google, China, Attack
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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