Justice Department Charges Chinese Hackers In Bid To Curtail Cyber-Theft

24 December 2018
Knowledge Base

by Ryan Lucs

The Justice Department announced charges against two alleged hackers suspected of working on the orders of the Chinese government as part what the U.S. alleges is a long-running effort to steal American intellectual property. The charges were part of a broader move by the Trump administration to push back against what U.S. officials describe as China’s relentless drive to steal American business secrets. The two men, Zhu Hua and Zhang Shilong, are part of a “hacking group” known as Advanced Persistent Threat 10, according to an indictment unsealed in the Southern District of New York.

The two men allegedly were working for a company called Huaying Haitai and in association with China’s main intelligence agency, the Ministry of State Security. The men are charged with conspiracy to commit computer intrusions, conspiracy to commit wire fraud and aggravated identity theft.

Vast scale to alleged thefts

The indictment details alleged cyber-attacks that targeted intellectual property, confidential business and technological information and other data at more than 45 companies in at least a dozen U.S. states and within U.S. government agencies.
The scale of the alleged cyber-theft is huge, from the banking and finance world to medical equipment to oil and gas exploration to aviation and space to the maritime industry.

“We want China to cease its illegal cyber activities,” said Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in announcing the charges.
He urged Beijing to abide by international commitments it has made not to use cyber-attacks to steal secrets. And the United States isn’t the only country harmed, Rosenstein said; a dozen countries were hurt by the cyber-theft detailed in the charges unveiled on Thursday.

Source: https://www.npr.org/

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