SAN FRANCISCO – Computer hackers in China broke into the Gmail accounts of several hundred people, including senior U.S. government officials, military personnel and political activists, Google Inc. said Wednesday.

The attacks appeared to rely on so-called “phishing” scams and other underhanded behavior that hackers frequently use to obtain passwords from people, and on websites that aren’t vigilant about protecting the information.

Google credited its own security measures for detecting and disrupting the intrusions. All of the victims have been notified and their Gmail account secured, according to the company.

Google wouldn’t say what parts of the U.S. government were targeted or whether any confidential information may have been contained in the breached Gmail accounts.