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US urged to stop smearing China over 'cyberattacks'

By Cui Jia Source:China Daily 2024-04-16

Claims by United States politicians, intelligence community and companies that the "Volt Typhoon" hacking organization is "Chinese state-sponsored" are an attempt to hype the "China threat theory" and deceitfully obtain funding from the US Congress and taxpayers, according to a report from China's National Computer Virus Emergency Response Center.

On Jan 31, a US congressional committee held a hearing on the so-called "cyberthreat" from China, claiming that "Chinese state-sponsored" hacking organization "Volt Typhoon" launched a series of activities affecting networks across critical US infrastructure sectors.

The allegation originated from a joint advisory by the cybersecurity authorities of the US and its "Five Eyes" allies — the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

The advisory was issued based on information released by US tech company Microsoft. But the report, released on Monday, pointed out that neither the advisory nor the information from Microsoft provided a detailed analytical process for source tracing of the cyberattacks from "Volt Typhoon".

Furthermore, analysis by Chinese technical teams showed that many of the IP addresses used by "Volt Typhoon" to launch the attacks were previously used by a ransomware group named 'Dark Power', which has no country and sectoral connection, said Du Zhenhua, a senior engineer at the National Computer Virus Emergency Response Center.

"In fact, 'Volt Typhoon' has more correlation with 'Dark Power' or other cybercriminals," Du added.

The attribution by Microsoft and the "Five Eyes" allies was very hasty, and claiming that "Volt Typhoon" is China-backed based on these ambiguous factors is groundless, he added.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Lin Jian said on Monday at a news briefing in Beijing that there were indications that US intelligence agencies and cybersecurity companies had conspired to piece together their so-called evidence and spread false information in order to obtain congressional budget allocations and US federal government contracts.

In the 2025 fiscal year budget request announced on March 11 by the administration of US President Joe Biden, the federal government's cybersecurity budget in the civil administrative departments and agencies reached a record $13 billion, a 10 percent increase from the 2024 fiscal year.

Also, the "China threat" theory has become the best selling point for cybersecurity companies to explore the US and European markets. In short, US politicians, officials and entrepreneurs can all benefit from the "Volt Typhoon "campaign, the report said.

"It's well known that the US is the biggest source of cyberattacks, posing the greatest threat to cybersecurity. For some time, certain individuals in the US have been crying 'thief' while acting as the thief and using 'cyberattacks' as tools to suppress China," Lin said.

Lin urged the US to stop politicizing cybersecurity issues and cease slandering and smearing China.

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