U.S. Hacker Hits Gold: Documents Appear to Confirm Falsified Ages of Chinese Gymnast

A U.S. hacker has gained access to closed Chinese documents that allegedly prove what has long been alleged: China is lying about the ages of its gymnastic team. The documents relate to He Kexin, who edged out American Nastia Liukin for the gold on uneven bars. The disclosure is the work of “Stryde,” a computer security expert for the New York-based Intrepidus Group. The site Stryde Hax revealed a detailed forensic search for He’s age. Stryde was identified by Information Week as Mike Walker.

China has relied on the passport that the government issued, even though at least three of the team had prior documents showing that they did not meet the age 16 requirement of the IOC, here.

The hacker hit gold in examining the cache of Chinese search engine Baidu. He found that Baidu lists two spreadsheets in He’s name, both giving her date of birth as January 1, 1994 – making her 14 years and 220 days old. Worse yet for China, the source of the data is, you guessed it, the General Administration of Sport of China.

Now, the question is what the notoriously passive IOC will do in face of mounting evidence of fraud. If substantiated, this is a fraud that is now being committed in plain view. It is one thing to fake the singer at the opening ceremonies, here, and quite another to fake the qualifying requirements for an athlete. What is particularly outrageous is that, if true, this was a fraud committed by the highest levels of the Chinese government. We know, for example, the the decision to lip sync the opening song was made at the highest levels. This controversy began before the games even started and required a concerted conspiracy to defraud the games, including government-issued false documents.

Since at least one prior Chinese gymnast has admitted to faking her age before winning a medal, some deterrence is obviously needed when a government participated in such a fraud. The obvious response is to strip the medals from the athlete, including any team medals for the country. However, a lifetime ban may be the only true deterrent as well as the possibility of banning the responsible trainers/coaches for life. There is also the possibility of banning the nation’s team from the next Olympics in that sport.

For the full story, click here and here.

13 thoughts on “U.S. Hacker Hits Gold: Documents Appear to Confirm Falsified Ages of Chinese Gymnast”

  1. Idk its obvious the chines cheated big time! At first I thought it would b a disadvantage being younger but I realize that the younger gymnasts have a large advantage over the older ones. First their bodies aren’t as beat up. And second they have more endurance. Is it so hard to play fair? Seariously!!!!!!! And cro I think the sports change with the times thus spirit of the olympics is still the same just different sports.

  2. It is obvious that these gymnasts are not 16. The Chinese have done this before and they need to be caught. The Olympic spirit is about the ideal of fairness. One girl is missing her baby tooth?

  3. Gee, I don’t know sticks.

    I really enjoy watching them slip in a ringer in the “Tiddlywinks” open challenge.

  4. The spirit of the games is competition, not cheating. The rest of you decide what works for you. For me, as an athelete I wanted fair competiton. But not everyone subscribes to ethics and morals. Your loss.

  5. Personally the only Olympic event I watch is the Women’s biathlon. I only watch that because I like the look on peoples’ faces when I tell them that.

  6. Frankly I’m not sure why anyone even cares.

    After all, when they make Basketball an olympic sport we’ve pretty much closed the book on the spirit of Athens and what it means to be an olympic contender.

    By this time next year I’ve no doubt that “Wheel of Fortune” will make it’s way to the cornucopia of Olympic events.

  7. Yep, and the Chinese have done this before, too:

    “Yang Yun, a Chinese gymnast who was listed as 16 when she won double bronzes at Sydney, later went on Chinese television and said she had been 14 when she competed.”

    http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1832312,00.html?imw=Y

    Also, what is striking about the incident with the little girl in the opening ceremonies, which seems trivial in and of itself, is that the decision to put in the double was reportedly approved by the Chinese Politburo! If the upper echelons of the Chinese government are micromanaging these games to such a degree, then what evidentiary value do those (very recent) passports present?

  8. It’s about time a US hacker got something on the Chinese.

    Their hackers have been roaming freely around our government systems long enough, unanswered.

    Maybe we should make “Hacking” an Olympic sport.

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