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Australian cyber attack: Prime Minister Scott Morrison says criminal is ‘sophisticated’ and state-centric

Morrison, the presence of the attacks during the press conference on Friday, the entire government, industry, political organizations, education, health, other critical infrastructure providers and operators of the “state-based cyber actor”. “

Although the government said that its investigation did not reveal “large-scale personal data breaches”, it did not specify which agencies or businesses believed to be under attack, nor did they detail the exact nature of the attacks.

Morrison also did not say which state Australia believed in behind the attack. “There are not many state-based actors that can engage in such activities,” he told reporters.

“It is clear that this was done by a state-based actor with very, very important talents,” Morrison said.

The attacks are not new either, and Morrison has made clear that such threats are “a constant problem for Australia to deal with”. However, he added that he was asked to speak on Friday as the “frequency” has increased for months “.

A possible criminal

Although Morrison refused to say who could be behind the attacks, the scale and timing immediately pointed many political observers at China. When asked whether the journalists were responsible for Beijing on Friday, Morrison said that he “could not control the speculation”.

Relations between Beijing and Canberra have been crater in recent months. Australia called for an international investigation into the origin of the coronavirus pandemic and damaged China’s criticism of dealing with the outbreak first. Beijing later imposed customs duties on Australian cattle and barley, and Chinese officials threatened the boycott if relations continued to deteriorate.
China has long been accused of foreign governments organizing large-scale cyber attacks against other governments. Washington in May last Warns that China is probably behind efforts Stealing coronavirus vaccine research from US research institutions and pharmaceutical companies.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry reiterated on Friday that the country is “a loyal keeper of cybersecurity” and that “we have become the biggest victims of cyber attacks”.

“We are absolutely against any cyber attack,” said ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian. Said.

The country has consistently dismissed allegations regarding cyber espionage activities.

Talent and motivation

Peter Jennings, general manager of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), told CNN Business that “China responsible for this attack has a 95% chance”.

“It really comes to understand the capacity and attention any country might have wanted to undertake this type of attack against Australia,” said Jennings, a senior official at a former Australian Defense Department. Said. “There are other talented countries, namely Russia and North Korea, but in both cases they are not as comprehensive as China’s.”

He added that neither Russia nor North Korea currently has a major strategic interest in Australian policy.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao attacked ASPI’s credibility on Friday, saying it “has gathered and set up any anti-Chinese agenda”.

“He has no reputation,” he said.

“There is only one country with a combination of talent and motivation, and this is China,” said ASPI’s Jennings. Said. “And frankly, China has a pattern of this behavior over the years.”

Canberra has avoided committing crimes to other countries in the past for major cyber attacks in the past, including an operation launched against the country’s parliament and major political parties in 2019.

Months after the attack, Reuters reported – by referring to Australian government sources – concluded that Canberra was specifically guilty of China. “The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs refused to interfere with any kind of attack,” said Reuters at the time, saying the internet was full of difficult theories to follow.

– CNN’s Hilary Whiteman and Isaac Yee contributed to reporting.

Abbott Hopkins

Analyst. Amateur problem solver. Wannabe internet expert. Coffee geek. Tv guru. Award-winning communicator. Food nerd.

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