Chinese man charged with hack of Boeing, Lockheed Martin aircraft data

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Stephen Su is accused of accessing U.S. firms' systems, including defense contractors Boeing and Lockheed Martin.

A Chinese man, who operated an aviation tech firm with Canadian operations, has been charged with hacking a number of U.S. companies for military data, including defense contractors Boeing and Lockheed Martin.

On Saturday, CBC News reported that the FBI filed a complaint against Stephen Su (who also goes by Su Bin and Stephen Subin) on June 27. Su was taken into custody by Canadian police on June 28, the FBI confirmed with the outlet.

From 2009 to 2013, Su and two unnamed citizens of China conspired to hack the computers of the world's largest aerospace firm, Boeing, which is headquartered in Chicago and manufactures commercial jetliners and military aircraft, the complaint said. Targeted Boeing computers and networks were located in Orange County, Calif., prosecutors alleged.

Su owned his own aviation technology firm called Lode-Tech, which maintained an office in Canada, the FBI revealed.

Data of interest to the three individuals included “information related to Boeing's military projects, including the C-17 aircraft…an advanced strategic transport aircraft,” court documents said. Other data allegedly sought by the hackers were files on Lockheed's F-22 and F-35 fighter jets.

Obtained correspondence between the hackers said that the individuals had stolen 65 gigabytes of data from Boeing that was specifically related its C-17 aircraft. Investigators believe that the three conspired to sell the data to the Chinese government.

“In some instances, Su would also seek to sell stolen data obtained by [co-conspirator 1] to entities in the Peoples' Republic of China, including to state-owned companies, for their personal profit,” the complaint said.

Su is expected to appear in court on Friday for his bail hearing.

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