Niwa supercomputer back online

Last updated 18:03, May 26 2014
ATTACKED: Niwa's supercomputer was apparently hit by a hack from China.

ATTACKED: Niwa's supercomputer was apparently hit by a hack from China.

Niwa’s supercomputer is back online after falling victim to a cyber attack.

The $12.7 million system, known as FitzRoy, was targeted by a computer hacker believed to be in China late last week.

A Niwa spokeswoman said the supercomputer was brought back online on Saturday evening and all normal services had resumed ‘‘after taking a number of mitigation steps.’’

‘‘NIWA is able to confirm that the unauthorised attempts to gain access to the supercomputer were unsuccessful.’’

The supercomputer was taken offline as soon as the hacking attempt was discovered.

It was used to run scientific models and services and no sensitive personal or client information is stored on it, she said.

The National Cyber Security Centre - an offshoot of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) - was kept informed throughout the process.

Insurance Council of New Zealand New Zealand (ICNZ) chief executive Tim Grafton said businesses needed to be better prepared for escalating cyber threats.

Global cyber-attacks increased more than 2000 percent in the past four years with about half originating from the Asia Pacific region.

‘‘The hacking of Niwa’s supercomputer last week is a stark reminder that New Zealand is not immune to the increasing global threat of cyber-crime,’’ Grafton said.

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 - © Fairfax NZ News

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