Internet giant, Google has threatened to exit from China, the world's biggest internet market, after a highly sophisticated and targeted cyber attack originating from China tried to break into the e-mail accounts of Chinese human rights activists.
Refusing to bow any further to the strict censorship laws under which it is compelled to operate in China, Google said it is ready to exit from the Chinese market, where it has made its biggest investments.
Commenators say that the ramifications of such a move will be difficult for other multinationals operating in China to ignore.
David Drummond, Google's chief legal officer of said in a blog post, that in mid-December, the company detected a highly sophisticated and targeted attack on its corporate infrastructure originating from China that resulted in the theft of its intellectual property.
Although, what appeared initially to be only a security incident, albeit a significant one, was something quite different as the company soon discovered that the accounts of dozens of Gmail users based in the US, China and Europe, who are advocates of human rights in China, appear to have been routinely accessed by third parties.
Drummond said that these accounts have not been accessed through any security breach at Google, but most likely via phishing scams or malware placed on the users' computers.