Cyber Attacks on Political Decision-Makers in Britain, US, and New Zealand Linked to Chinese Government; APT 31 Attributed to State-Sponsored Cyber Activity

Understanding the Chinese Hacking Scandal

On Monday, the British Deputy Prime Minister announced to the MPs in the House of Commons that both the British Electoral Commission’s systems and private devices of several parliamentarians were hacked. According to the National Center for Cybersecurity, the cybercriminals behind these attacks were most likely working on behalf of the Chinese government. This was viewed as a clear signal of hostile intentions from China.

The US Department of Justice revealed that the same hackers also conducted cyber attacks in America, targeting various government departments and members of Congress. Additionally, New Zealand’s government confirmed that their Parliament server was also a victim of state-sponsored cyber activity attributed to China. These attacks took place between 2021 and 2022.

The US Department of Justice identified the hacker group as “APT 31”, operating out of Wuhan, China. The group has ties to the Chinese Ministry of National Security and is believed to have been responsible for cyber operations targeting critics of the Communist Party and stealing business secrets. They used phishing emails to gain access to sensitive information from companies in key sectors.

Political decision-makers in all three affected countries, including members of cross-party committees dealing with China, were targeted by these hackers. The extent of these attacks on individuals has raised concerns about cybersecurity and foreign interference in political affairs. Sanctions were imposed on these hackers and their associated companies by both Britain and America.

China denied involvement in these cyber attacks and criticized sanctions imposed by Britain and America on its officials or companies involved in such activities. The Chinese Embassy in London stated that they do not interfere in internal affairs of other countries but suggested that current governments would be judged by their actions soon enough

Leave a Reply