Japan space agency hit with cyberattack, rocket and satellite info not accessed

TOKYO (Reuters) -Japan’s space agency was hit with a cyberattack but the information the hackers accessed did not include anything important for rocket and satellite operations, a spokesperson said on Wednesday.

“There was a possibility of unauthorised access by exploiting the vulnerability of network equipment,” the spokesperson at Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) said, declining to elaborate on details such as when the attack took place.

The space agency learned of the possibility of the unauthorised access after receiving information from an external organisation and conducting an internal investigation, the spokesperson said, declining to identify the organisation’s name.

The investigation is ongoing, the spokesperson said.

Japanese media reported Wednesday that the cyberattack occurred during the summer and the police became aware of the attack and notified JAXA this autumn. The Yomiuri newspaper first reported the incident.

(Reporting by Satoshi Sugiyama; Editing by Tom Hogue and Gerry Doyle)