UK, US, and EU blame China for hacking Microsoft

Cybercrimes across the world are emerging nowadays. In 2020, the most common type of cybercrime as reported to the U.S internet Crime Complaint Center was phishing and similar fraud, with 241,342 complaints.

The UK, US, and EU have accused China of carrying out a major cyber-attack earlier this year. 

The attack targeted Microsoft Exchange servers, affecting at least 30,000 organizations globally.

The UK said Chinese state-backed actors were responsible, while the EU said the attack came from “the territory of China”.

The Chinese Ministry of State Security (MSS) was also accused of wider espionage activity and a broader pattern of “reckless” behavior.

China has previously denied allegations of hacking and says it opposes all forms of cyber-crime.

The unified call-out of Beijing signals the gravity with which this case has been taken. Western intelligence officials say aspects of this case are markedly more serious than anything they have seen before.

The hackers exploited a vulnerability in Microsoft Exchange which allowed backdoors to be placed on systems that allowed further access.

The UK said the attack was likely to enable large-scale espionage, including the acquisition of personal information and intellectual property.

The backdoors used by the Chinese group were also exploited by other hacking groups, leaving systems vulnerable to ransomware attacks and espionage.

Despite the strong statements, there are no signs of sanctions against China.

Microsoft announced details of the hack back in March and said a China-linked group called Hafnium was responsible. China denied those accusations.

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