News / USA

China Warns of More Repercussions Over US Cyber Indictments

US Charges Chinese Military Officers With Cyber Espionagei
May 20, 2014 3:10 AM
A grand jury in the United States on Monday indicted five members of the Chinese military on charges of cyber espionage against six American businesses. Analysts say the move sends a powerful signal to China that Washington has reached its limit. Natalie Liu has more from Washington.
Watch related video from Natalie Liu.
China has lodged a protest with the U.S. Ambassador in Beijing in response to accusations that five Chinese military officers engaged in cyber theft and espionage targeting American companies and labor groups. China also says it could take further steps in response to the indictments.
China’s Foreign Ministry says Beijing lodged the protest late Monday night to U.S. Ambassador Max Baucus, shortly after the indictments were announced.
China has flatly denied the accusations and called on the United States to revoke the indictment.
Beijing says it is Washington that owes the world an explanation about its own behavior in cyberspace.  Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei says that “instead of giving an explanation, the U.S. is blurring right and wrong.” He says, “China is demanding that the U.S. give a clear explanation and stop such activities.”
In the past, the U.S. has accused China of hacking computers to steal everything from military technology to commercial secrets. But the indictments are the first attempt to hold individuals accountable for the crimes.
When pressed about whether China engages in cyber hacking on Tuesday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei flatly denied the country has ever been involved in the use of cyber-theft of trade secrets. He also denied China has ever used hacking against its own people.
China says revelations made public by former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden and Wikileaks highlight the hypocrisy of the United States when it comes to cyber security.
In its indictment, the United States alleges the military officers were part of a Chinese military hacking group called unit 61398.  But, U.S. officials have been careful to point out that their key concern is the use of hacking to steal commercial secrets to benefit Chinese companies.
China’s Defense Ministry has flatly denied the charges and warned the indictments could not only impact an ongoing dialogue over cyber security but military ties as well.
Wu Riqiang, a political scientist at Beijing’s Renmnin University says he finds the indictments baffling.
Wu says, “ China and the United States have just started a dialogue on Internet security that Washington has been asking for for a long time and Beijing just recently finally agreed.” But now with the indictments, Wu says, “this has completely destroyed this newly established dialogue.”
He says that although the United States and China have their own concerns about cyber security, those concerns  should be handled behind closed doors, not by applying pressure in public.
Wu says that “in the short term it will be really hard to even begin holding talks again,” adding that this has “shut the door on talks all together.”    
AmCham China Chairman Gregory Gilligan says cyber security is a major concern for the business community.
In a statement on Tuesday, Gilligan says the group sees a “fundamental difference between intelligence gathering for legitimate national security purposes and intelligence gathering for stealing trade secrets.”
He says the group is urging both governments to reach an agreement on the rules of the road that helps to clarify the difference between the two.

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Comment Sorting
by: Chuck from: North Carolina
May 23, 2014 5:14 AM
This is a case of the pot calling the kettle black.

by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
May 22, 2014 9:47 PM
I think the matter is not for moral but for whether it is illeagal and criminal or not. Espionage from private companies hurting their rights and profits must be blamed and indicted. In this reported case, China must prove government's innocence first of all as it has been indicted before blaming counterpart's possible faullts.

by: meanbill from: USA
May 20, 2014 12:05 PM
We were such good friends with China -- (AND NOW?) -- can't the Chinese throw (5) Chinese under the bus, to stay good friends with us? -- The Chinese are acting so hurt and sensitive, (but they could help Obama), by taking some of the heat off his administration, that's under fire from all sides, over mismanagement, and incompetence?
In Response

by: JD from: NYC
May 24, 2014 7:07 AM
Siok Tong: China owns 7% of US "debt", almost all of which is US Treasury bonds, which doesn't mean we "owe" you a damn thing, or that you "own". Get your facts straight, instead of following the Commie un-free press that makes you think China's more important than it is.
In Response

by: Siok Tong from: San Diego China Town
May 20, 2014 9:11 PM
China don't need no stinking US Rule of Law. China rules! China takes what China wants & China wants all. Move aside US, we own your ass. Pay up ($16 trillion US dollars) or shut up!
In Response

by: Adam9 from: Dong Nai
May 20, 2014 1:58 PM
Not a moving one, meanbill !!

by: So So from: US
May 20, 2014 9:41 AM
A new cold war is starting up?

by: gutwolf from: china
May 20, 2014 9:06 AM
Sometimes,the power is the truth!Unfortunately,US is the biggest Superpower country!So the truth is what us said,yet USA had done the same thing as what china had done,even more!But the media is blind!
In Response

by: gutwolf from: china
May 21, 2014 7:50 AM
If these 5 persons are guilty or not is not the key point!U.S had done more!Even to its allies.How can a thief yells for catching the thief!
In Response

by: Ho Lee Fook from: Beijing
May 20, 2014 10:33 AM
Warning: 50 Cent Party Troll Alert !
In Response

by: Steven Hong
May 20, 2014 10:03 AM
It does not matter what is being said and by whom. These 5 persons have the right to be considered innocent until proven guilty. US is a country ruled by law, "indictments" do not necessarily mean they are guilty of the alleged crime. The media is "blind" not, they can only report and speculate but their words are not necessary the truth either. These 5 persons will have their days in court, the truth will eventually come out.

by: An old soldier
May 20, 2014 6:20 AM
The US is wide open. I think Communist China has a culture of taking things and yet not considered as stealing like taking items left unattended in the front of someone’s house, for example. So when they were caught and accused of the crime they would get upset.

Also, I think Communist China perceives partnership differently. If you were in partnership with Communist China for doing something good, they would expect you to be their collaborator or co-conspirator in doing bad things too. Conversely, if you were in partnership with their adversary in doing something, anything, they would suspect you to be the collaborator or co-conspirator of their adversary in doing (or going to do) something against their interest as well.
In Response

by: Old Salt from: US
May 20, 2014 10:25 PM
If you all know the history of the Far East, then you know China (as we know it now) is not a model country when it comes to killing & plundering. Her Emperor couldn't care less about his subjects. He built the said great China wall to protect his real states & used slave labor to built it & their bones lined the length of the wall. The communists headed by Mao Tse Tung's, revolution & cultural revolution (cleansing) killed millions of Chinese & non-ethnic Chinese. Compared to Cambodia, the Khmer Rouge's "killing field" story look like a small time massacre. But that was then, this is now. Do the crime, do the time!
In Response

by: Old soldier
May 20, 2014 7:23 PM
Occupation, looting, and atrocities, ... shameful!
In Response

by: Old soldier
May 20, 2014 12:45 PM
Those coercive treaties and other crimes committed by them against China and its people are terrible.
In Response

by: Old soldier
May 20, 2014 11:52 AM
(Wikipedia) the Eight-Nations Alliance stole from China are:
-The Greater Japanese Empire
-The Russian Empire
-The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland
-The French (Third) Republic
-The United States of America
-The German Empire
-The Kingdoms and Lands Represented in the Imperial Council and the Lands of the Holy Hungarian Crown of Saint Stephen (Austria-Hungary)
-The Kingdom of Italy
In Response

by: Old Soldier
May 20, 2014 11:37 AM
You are correct.
I believe the other 7 (France, Japan, Italy, Germany, ...) did more than the US. Actually, The US, at some points, did try to stop them.
In Response

by: Anonymous
May 20, 2014 10:51 AM
Good point. The U.S. should focus on apologizing and repaying the Republic of China (the surviving de-facto conqueror of the previous regime) and Chinese people around the world for participating in the rape of Imperial China and doing nothing while hundreds of millions of innocent people, many of whom were not Boxers, were beheaded, raped, mutilated, mugged, drugged, and humiliated. While the U.S. was not directly at fault for most of the atrocities, they were co-conspirators who motivated Japan to reunite East Asia... not to mention U.S.'s aggressive policies against Japan in the first place.

Only after all historical atrocities have been cleared will the U.S. gain support from the Chinese people around the world without having to fire a single bullet.
In Response

by: David from: Maryland
May 20, 2014 10:03 AM
You want to talk about stealing??? No one stole more than the Eight-Nation Alliance, which by the way, includes the US.

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