Technology.am (Apr. 21, 2009) —Once again computer spies hit the U.S., targeting sensitive data involving the $300 billion Joint Strike Fighter project. This project is the most expensive Pentagon weapons system ever developed; the program involves 7.5 million lines of code and hackers made off with several terabytes of it.
The Joint Strike Fighter project is also known as the F-35 Lightening II, and it is being developed by Lockheed Martin for the US Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps and the British Royal Navy.
It was said that the attacks originated from China, although Pentagon officials said it is very easy to mask such attacks and no actual proof exists of Chinese involvement. The Chinese Embassy in Washington denied the allegations.
The hackers infiltrated the system through network vulnerabilities of several contractors working on the project. In addition to Lockheed Martin, other contractors working on the fighter plane include Northrup Grumman and BAE Systems. The spies encrypted the data as it was being stolen, leaving Pentagon officials unable to account for all of the data that may have been stolen.