The US and its allies have accused China of exploiting a Microsoft vulnerability before it could be patched.
The People’s Republic of China (PRC) has a long history of turning a blind eye to hackers and ransomware groups. The Biden administration is holding PRC’s feet to the fire, calling out state-sponsored hacking.
“The United States is deeply concerned that the PRC has fostered an intelligence enterprise that includes contract hackers who also conduct unsanctioned cyber operations worldwide, including for their own personal profit,” reads the US statement. “As detailed in public charging documents unsealed in October 2018 and July and September 2020, hackers with a history of working for the PRC Ministry of State Security (MSS) have engaged in ransomware attacks, cyber enabled extortion, crypto-jacking, and rank theft from victims around the world, all for financial gain.”
The statement is one of the strongest denunciations of PRC’s involvement with international hacking.
“The PRC’s pattern of irresponsible behavior in cyberspace is inconsistent with its stated objective of being seen as a responsible leader in the world. Today, countries around the world are making it clear that concerns regarding the PRC’s malicious cyber activities is bringing them together to call out those activities, promote network defense and cybersecurity, and act to disrupt threats to our economies and national security.”
It remains to be seen what will come of the situation, but it will likely continue to play a part in the trade war between China and the US. The war reached its height under the Trump administration, but the Biden administration has been slow to roll back some of the measures taken by the previous one.
With these new revelations, it wouldn’t be surprising fo the US to take further action against Chinese corporations. In the meantime, the US is working to increase cybersecurity defense, both in the public and private sector.