On Monday, the Biden administration claimed China was behind the international cyberattack on Microsoft Exchange email servers.
According to US, European Union, and NATO intelligence, China’s Ministry of State Security is using hackers to hold companies for millions in ransom. “The breadth and duration of China’s hacking campaigns, including these efforts targeting a dozen countries across sectors ranging from healthcare and biomedical research to aviation and defense, remind us that no country or industry is safe,” Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco said. “Today’s international condemnation shows that the world wants fair rules, where countries invest in innovation, not theft.”
China’s scheme has impacted companies globally, leading lawmakers to question the country’s political standards and ethics, or lack thereof. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said China “has fostered an ecosystem of criminal contract hackers who carry out both state-sponsored activities and cybercrime for their own financial gain.” He continued, “Responsible states do not indiscriminately compromise global network security nor knowingly harbor cyber criminals – let alone sponsor or collaborate with them.”
The condemnation arrives after a wave of cyberattacks in the US, although investigations suggest Russian hackers were to blame. Earlier this month, following a series of hacks during Independence Day weekend, President Biden said “we will respond” if Russia is to blame.