US accuses China of “malicious” cyberattacks, including Microsoft hacks | Hacking

The United States has led its allies by blaming China for “malicious” cyberattacks, including: Microsoft Exchange Email Server Software Hack This put tens of thousands of computers around the world at risk earlier this year.

The U.S. Department of Justice charged four Chinese citizens with hacks on Monday after Washington accused Beijing of blackmail and threats of national security.

NS Microsoft The hack affected at least 30,000 US organizations, including local governments and organizations around the world, and was disclosed in March.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken accused China Responsible, he said, “It is a pattern of irresponsible, destructive and volatile behavior in cyberspace that poses a major threat to our economic and national security.”

In a statement, Blinken said China’s Ministry of National Security (MSS) has fostered an ecosystem of criminal contract hackers who carry out both state-sponsored activities and cybercrime for their own financial gain. “.

The announcement was made by the Chinese government, despite the Joe Biden administration’s consumption of attempts to curb ransomware attacks from Russia-based syndicates targeting critical infrastructure, including large fuel pipelines. It highlights the cyber threats posed by hackers.

With the administration Allied It also disclosed a variety of other cyber threats from Beijing, including ransomware attacks from government-related hackers targeting companies that demand millions of dollars.

According to US officials who did not want to be nominated, MSS has used criminal contract hackers engaged in cyber extortion programs and theft for their own benefit.

Officials said the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Japan and NATO are united against the threat. This is the first time NATO, a military alliance founded in 1949, has joined the formal condemnation of China’s cyber activities.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Justice has been working with MSS in a hacking campaign targeting dozens of computer systems, including businesses, universities, and government agencies during 2011, four prosecutors said. Announced charges against Chinese (three guards and one contract hacker) and 2018.

According to a statement from the Justice Department, the campaign targeted corporate secrets in industries such as aviation, defense, education, government, healthcare, biopharmacy, and the maritime industry.

Blinken said: “As evidenced by the indictment of three MSS officers unsealed by the Justice Department today and one of their contract hackers, the United States [Chinese] A malicious cyber attacker for irresponsible behavior in cyberspace. “

The EU and Britain also turned their fingers to China. The EU said that malicious cyber activities with “significant impacts” targeting government agencies, political organizations, and key industries in the block’s 27 member states could be associated with China’s hacking groups. Said.

The British National Cyber ​​Security Center said the group targeted the maritime industry and naval defense contractors in the US, European and Finnish parliaments.

On Tuesday, China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian countered US-led claims, calling the campaign “purely politically motivated smears and oppression.”

Zhao said it was China’s own research and instead accused the CIA of conducting cyber attacks on China’s aerospace research facilities, the oil industry, internet companies and government agencies for 11 years.

“China again urges the United States and its allies to stop cyber theft and attacks on China, stop throwing mud at China on cybersecurity issues, and withdraw so-called prosecutions,” Zhao said. Stated.

Western nations have long accused China of cyberattacks, but adjusted announcements on Monday are rare. Hank J. Holland Fellow of Cyber ​​Policy and Security at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, Herb Lin, said:

This year, there were a number of prominent ransomware strikes that disrupted major US pipelines, meat processors and software company Kaseya and affected 1,500 companies.

Most of the most devastating and attention-grabbing attacks these days are related to Russian criminal gangs. The U.S. has occasionally seen relationships between Russian intelligence and individual hackers, but the use of criminal contract hackers by the Chinese government is “different from performing unauthorized cyber operations globally,” U.S. officials said. Stated.

White House spokesman Jen Psaki faced a question on Monday as to why the United States did not retaliate under economic sanctions like Russia did.

“We are actually promoted and taken steps not only to speak publicly, but to take other actions from Russia as well, as they relate to problematic cyber activities from China. “We do,” said Mr. Pusaki. “We are not differentiating.”

A spokesman denied Washington’s reluctance to impose sanctions because the US economy relies heavily on Chinese imports.

“We are not restraining,” she said. “We do not allow financial circumstances or considerations that prevent us from taking action for good reason.

Government officials wanted the government’s attribution of Microsoft’s attack on MSS hackers to combine the discovery of ransomware and commercial hacking operations with corporate guidance on announcements and tactics. Said. Chinese are using it.

The United States attributed the attack to “a malicious cyberattacker with a high degree of trust in MSS,” a senior government official said.

Recommendations issued by the FBI, the National Security Agency, the Cyber ​​Security and Infrastructure Security Agency on Monday presented specific technologies and methods by which government agencies and businesses can protect themselves.

Unusually harsh criticisms open another rift in Sino-US relations already tense due to trade, China’s military buildup, the crackdown on democracy activists in Hong Kong, the treatment of Uighurs in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, and the invasion of the South China Sea. I’m threatening.

Last month, G7 and NATO leaders agreed with Biden at a summit meeting between Britain and Belgium that China accused China of raising systematic challenges to the world order.

US accuses China of “malicious” cyberattacks, including Microsoft hacks | Hacking

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