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Technology

Cyberattacks on Japan aerospace industry exploited 'zero-day' flaw

Roughly 200 companies and institutions targeted, including JAXA

A H-IIA rocket carrying satellites lifts off from Japan's Tanegashima Space Center: The Japanese space agency was among the targets of a series of cyberattacks. (Kyodo via Reuters)

TOKYO -- Revelations of cyberattacks targeting about 200 mainly aerospace companies in Japan show an intent to exploit software weaknesses before they could be fixed, with the apparent involvement of the Chinese military, according to authorities and cybersecurity experts.

Tokyo police on Tuesday referred an IT systems engineer to prosecutors on suspicion of taking part in the attacks, which had Japan's space agency JAXA among the targets. The engineer, who already has left the country, is a man in his 30s and a member of China's Communist Party, authorities said.

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