For the first time, the US government explicitly accused China’s government and military for targeting cyber-attacks on US government computers. The accusation is stated in an almost 100-page US annual report about the Chinese military forces. China however, is denying the accusation.
According to the Pentagon, accuses were focused on collecting intelligence on US diplomatic, economic and defence sectors. This information supports the US defence program, and could, when in hands of China, also benefit the Chinese defence program.
In earlier research, it was estimated that about 90 percent of cyber attacks to the US came from China. The Pentagon always restrained from directly accusing China for the attacks. Also, the Pentagon used to speak about possible attacks coming from China, but tried to avoid involving the Chinese government in the cyber-attacks. Yet, the recent report of the department of defence said:
“In 2012, numerous computer systems around the world, including those owned by the US government, continued to be targeted for intrusions, some of which appear to be attributable directly to the Chinese government and military.”
A clear suspicion is being made here about the involvement of the Chinese government.
China’s foreign ministry spokesman Hua Chunying criticised the report, and responded by saying that China has repeatedly stated that it disapproves any form of computer hacking attacks. They would like to hold constructive talks with the US about cyber security. Furthermore she said China would oppose any groundless criticism and speculations because it would only harm efforts for co-operation and dialogue between the countries.
This accusation, whether it’s true or not, will surely lead to more increasing tensions between the US and China.