The Latest: Britain also accuses China of cyberespionage

By – Associated Press – Thursday, December 20, 2018

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Latest on Chinese cyberespionage (all times local):

11:45 a.m.

The British government has accused China of conducting a “widespread and significant” campaign of cyberespionage against the U.K. and its allies.

The Foreign Office says a group known as APT 10, acting on behalf of the , carried out “a malicious cyber campaign targeting intellectual property and sensitive commercial data in Europe, Asia and the U.S.”

It says the group “almost certainly continues to target a range of global companies, seeking to gain access to commercial secrets.”

Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt says China’s actions “go against commitments made to the U.K. in 2015 and as part of the G20 not to support cyber-enabled theft of intellectual property or trade secrets.”

The U.K. announcement came as U.S. officials unsealed an indictment against two Chinese citizens accused of cyberespionage.

___

10:30 a.m.

The Justice Department is charging two Chinese citizens with carrying out an extensive hacking campaign to steal data from U.S. companies.

An indictment was unsealed Thursday against Zhu Hua and Zhang Shillong. Prosecutors say they were acting on behalf of China’s main intelligence agency.

Court papers filed in Manhattan federal court allege the hackers were able to breach the computers of more than 45 entities in 12 states. The victims were in a variety of industries from aviation and space to pharmaceutical technology.

Prosecutors charge that the hackers were able to steal “hundreds of gigabytes” of data.

Court papers say they hacked computer service providers to gain access to the networks of businesses and governments in order to steal intellectual property and business data.

Chinese intelligence officials and hackers. A case filed in October marked the first time that a officer was extradited to the United States to stand trial.

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