US charges 2 Chinese hackers over alleged cyber espionage

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Washington DC, Dec. 20 (efe-epa) - The United States on Thursday called on China to act responsibly in cyberspace after a “broad cyberattack campaign” against intellectual property and “sensitive” commercial data was detected in the US, Europe and Asia.

In a joint statement, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen expressed the government’s “concern” about the activities they believe violate the 2015 cyber commitments between Beijing and Washington.

Both recalled that China undertook to prevent and not support the theft of intellectual property, including trade secrets or other commercial information, via the internet “with the intention of providing competitive advantages to companies or commercial sectors.”


However, the statement said that since at least 2014 Chinese hackers linked to their country’s Ministry of State Security “have hacked multiple US and global managed service and cloud providers.”

Pompeo and Nielsen stated these cyber-criminals have put at risk “the customer networks of suppliers, including global companies in at least twelve countries.”

“Stability in cyberspace cannot be achieved if countries engage in irresponsible behavior that undermines the national security and the economic prosperity of other countries,” both US officials stated.

Accordingly, US Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Thursday revealed that charges have been brought against two alleged Chinese hackers linked to China’s Ministry of State Security, who are accused of infiltrating computer systems to obtain confidential data.

At a press conference, Rosenstein said that the two hackers, identified as Zhu Hua and Zhang Shilong, are suspected of “conspiracy to commit computer intrusions against dozens of companies in the United States and the world.”