Vietnamese government denies Aurora-style hacks

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Accusations are 'groundless', say officials.

The Vietnamese government has dismissed recent accusations that it may have been involved in cyber attacks on opponents of bauxite mining efforts in the region.

Google researcher Neel Mehta and McAfee chief technology officer George Kurtz both wrote on their respective blogs about hacking attacks against some Vietnamese computer users.

The attacks used similar methods to the now-infamous Operation Aurora attacks by Chinese hackers on Google and other companies, according to the blogs.

"We believe that the perpetrators may have political motivations, and may have some allegiance to the government of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam," wrote Kurtz at the time.

"This incident underscores that not every attack is motivated by data theft or money. This is likely the latest example of hacktivism and politically motivated cyber attacks."

However, Vietnam foreign ministry spokesperson Nguyen Phuong Nga said in a statement that such comments were "groundless".

"We have on many occasions clearly expounded our view on issues relating to access to and use of information and information technology, including the internet," the statement said.

"Vietnam law puts in place specific regulations against computer virus and malware as well as on information security and confidentiality."

Although the attacks are not thought to be related to those against Google's systems earlier this year, they still highlight the growing incidence of " malicious software being used for political ends", wrote Mehta.

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