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updated 8/12/2011 12:20:23 PM ET 2011-08-12T16:20:23

The Hong Kong stock exchange website was hit by a cyberattack yesterday (Aug. 11), marking the second day in a row that traders who rely on the site for up-to-date financial information have been left in the dark.

Charles Li, chief executive of the Hong Kong stock exchange (HKEx), blamed the disruption of the exchange's website, hkexnews.hk, on a denial of service attack, and said that most of the attacking computers were not located in Hong Kong, the security firm Sophos reported.

This indicates that a botnet, a mass network of compromised computers, may be responsible for the attacks.

Stocks affected by the breach include HSBC, Cathay Pacific, China Power International and the HKEx itself.

On Wednesday (Aug. 10), the problems began for the HKEx; the exchange halted trading on seven stocks in the afternoon after it discovered that the hkexnews.hk website had come under fire.

The HKEx is working with Bloomberg and Thomson Reuters to relay timely financial information. The exchange will also publish notices in local newspapers.

This is not the first time cybercriminals have targeted a major stock market: in February, hackers hit Directors Desk, a cloud-based application owned by Nasdaq that stores financial reports for Fortune 500 companies and thousands of their board members.

© 2012 SecurityNewsDaily. All rights reserved

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