ZHOUSHAN, China (CNN) — They operate from a bare apartment on a Chinese island. They are intelligent 20-somethings who seem harmless. But they are hard-core hackers who claim to have gained access to the world’s most sensitive sites, including the Pentagon.
The leader of these Chinese hackers says there “is always a weakness” on networks that allows cyber break-ins.
In fact, they say they are sometimes paid secretly by the Chinese government — a claim the Beijing government denies.
“No Web site is one hundred percent safe. There are Web sites with high-level security, but there is always a weakness,” says Xiao Chen, the leader of this group.
“Xiao Chen” is his online name. Along with his two colleagues, he does not want to reveal his true identity. The three belong to what some Western experts say is a civilian cyber militia in China, launching attacks on government and private Web sites around the world.
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