Maritime Computer Emergency Response Team ADMIRAL dataset ADMIRAL dataset

Publicly disclosed information for this event

Index Number:
Espionage on a subcontractor working for defence contracts.
Day Month Year Country Activity Incident Type
XX January 2018 United States Defence Intrusion


The victim, a Navy contractor engaged in highly sensitive work for the victim, was the subject of a security compromise. This entity develops naval warfare technology, including the creation of advanced submarine systems and undersea weapons, and is linked to significant U.S. defense initiatives such as the Sea Dragon project and other underwater programs.

According to sources, state-sponsored attackers infiltrated the contractor's systems in early 2018. The TTPs of the breach align with those typically employed by the Chinese Ministry of State Security, known for its sophisticated cyber espionage operations. This incident is part of an ongoing cyberwarfare narrative between the U.S. and China, with the latter making significant advances despite international attempts to stem such intrusions.

The breach led to the exfiltration of 614 gigabytes of data, including details on the so-called Sea Dragon project. Although officials noted the data was unclassified, when aggregated, it potentially bore the hallmarks of classified information.


Naval Undersea Warfare Center

Claimed/Reported Threat Actor




Main impact



Recommendations to Defence to reduce Intrusion risks:

  • Implement strong access controls and authentication mechanisms to limit unauthorized access, such as Multi Factor Authentication.
  • Regularly update and patch software and systems to address known vulnerabilities.
  • Use Network Intrusion Detection Systems (NIDS) to monitor and block suspicious activities.
  • Segment your network to limit lateral movement by attackers in case of a breach.
  • Educate your employees about phishing attacks and social engineering tactics to prevent credential theft.
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Files generated on Monday, 11th December 2023.
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