Australia's central bank targeted by hackers

Reserve Bank of Australia
Image caption The bank says no data had been lost as a result of the attacks

Australia's central bank has confirmed that it has been targeted by hackers.

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) said it had "on occasion been the target of cyber attacks", following a report in an Australian newspaper.

The report documented hacking incidents dating back to 2011, including malware embedded in emails.

The bank said no data had been lost and its systems had not been corrupted, but did not comment on reports the attacks originated in China.

China has frequently been blamed for similar cyber attacks, targeting economic or business information.

In a statement the RBA said: "The bank has comprehensive security arrangements in place which have isolated these attacks and ensured that viruses have not been spread across the Bank's network or systems.

"At no point have these attacks caused the Bank's data or information to be lost or its systems to be corrupted."

Malware used

According to an investigation by the Australian Financial Review, one of the attacks involved an email entitled "Strategic Planning FY2012" which was sent to and opened by several members of staff.

It contained a malware application, which had managed to bypass existing security controls, but was not able to spread through the computer system.

Another targeted information relating to the G20 meetings.

The bank did not comment on reports that the malware came from China.

The Chinese government has repeatedly denied that it is behind cyber attacks, which security experts say target sensitive governmental and commercial information.

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