Questions have been asked about why Google is the focus of last week's cyber attacks and why there has not been more activity or response from the other companies involved.
Gartner's Brian Prentice said that there is ‘a lot of stuff that we're still to learn about this whole case'. He asked: “Why does everyone seem so obsessed with a forensic examination of Google's motivation for acting the way they have?
“Need I remind everyone that there are at least 19 other companies involved. Where is all the discussion on what these organisations are doing in response to this situation? Or, perhaps more aptly, what these organisations are not doing in response to this situation?”
He went on to claim that it is important not to lose sight of the fact that global companies operating in a global economy are involved. As such, serious problems such as industrial or political espionage cannot simply be managed within the country of origin. It must be managed in an open manner and in a way that provides comfort and confidence to the company's stakeholders around the world.
Prentice therefore concluded that in this regard, Google has acted responsibly so the focus should shift from them.
He said: “As this story develops the scrutiny needs to placed on companies such as Microsoft, Adobe, Yahoo and Juniper Networks. Should we start discovering that these organisations' responses have been compromised by their commercial interests in China, perhaps it would be worthwhile to point to Dante Alighieri's observation that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, when faced with a moral crisis, remained neutral.”
In another opinion, Imperva CTO Amichai Shulman asked why Google employees are using Internet Explorer and not Google's own browser, Chrome.
He said: “This doesn't make sense. To execute an attack this sophisticated, it likely occurred as a result of spear phishing Google employees to gain access to Google users credentials.
“A hacker would have to jump through many hoops inside an internal network. This requires network - not browser - vulnerabilities so that the attacker can communicate with malware inside Google's internal network.
“Unfortunately, blaming Microsoft is all too easy and it's leading to a panic. France and Germany are now recommending that its citizens not use Internet Explorer given its role in the recent Google hacking incident. Could this be a clever way to boost Google Chrome downloads?”