A report warned that most cyber attacks against Chinese networks in 2018 came from the US, which Chinese experts predicted that the latter is preparing to wage a large-scale "cyberwar" but Beijing is prepared to launch a strong counterattack.
The information came from an annual report released by China's National Computer Network Emergency Response Technical Team (CNCERT), The Global Times reported.
The CNCERT said that in 2018, 14,000 servers in the US infected by a Trojan virus or botnet controlled 3.34 million host computers in China; and the number of servers increased 90.8 percent year-on-year, Xinhua News Agency reported.
In 2018, 3,325 US IP addresses with the Trojan virus infected 3,607 Chinese websites, an increase of 43 percent compared with 2017, CNCERT added.
Aside from implanting viruses, the US has long been hacking information from the terminals of Chinese customers and has been utilizing apps to tap, steal information and analyze the information they obtained, a Beijing-based military expert, who also specializes in cybersecurity, told the Global Times on Monday.
The increase of the attacks indicates that the US is preparing large-scale cyber attacks against China, and could escalate to a "cyberwar" to run concurrently with its trade war to prevent China's rapid development, experts stressed.
The CNCERT report proves that despite all the accusation from the US that China has been threatening its cybersecurity, the US itself is the biggest cyber attacker, the anonymous expert noted.
The US claims that China and Chinese companies pose a threat to US cyber and national security.
In March, Chinese telecom giant Huawei announced it suspected that the US government invaded its server.
The US, being the creator of the internet and initiator of cyber attacks, has top-notch hacking technology, Qin An, head of the Beijing-based Institute of China Cyberspace Strategy, told The Global Times.
The US now has 133 cyber teams and US Army Gen. Paul Nakasone, who also directs the National Security Agency, said in February that he expects more people to join, media reported.
But China has long prepared for the US, said the anonymous expert, noting that in 2016, China adopted a cybersecurity law that paid great attention to protecting national security and privacy and offered great leeway for security officials and regulators to conduct oversight of the country's massive internet sector.
The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) drafted a new regulation in May, which states that if acquisitions of products and services disrupt key information infrastructure, or lead to major losses of personal information and important data, or pose other security risks, they must be reported to the CAC's cybersecurity review office.
China has likewise issued cryptosecurity policies, such as banning the use of US-made terminal equipment on certain occasions and places, the expert added.
China should speed up the development of core internet technologies, and to ease its dependence on US internet technologies soon, observers noted, warning that "if there's a cyber war, the US will meet with China's full-scale fight back".
President Donald Trump National Security Adviser John Bolton has confirmed that the US is engaged in offensive cyber operations abroad to show Russia and other nations that they "will pay a price" for their interference in US affairs.
Speaking at an event in Washington on Tuesday, Bolton said that last year's decision to eliminate restrictions on offensive US cyber operations was a message to Washington adversaries.
"The purpose of which is to say to Russia or anybody else that's engaged in cyber operations against us, 'You will pay a price if we find that you are doing this. And we will impose costs on you until you get the point that it's not worth your while to use cyber against us,'" Bolton added.
US officials have repeatedly accused Russia of engaging in malicious "cyber intrusions", with Special Council Robert Meuller's Russiagate report charging Russian military intelligence with hacking into the email accounts of Clinton campaign employees and the Democratic National Committee's servers during the 2016 election to disseminate their contents to try to damage the Clinton campaign. WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange have consistently denied Russian state involvement in the the DNC email dump, telling US media in late 2016 that while they could not reveal their source, "it wasn't a state party".
Russia has regularly rejected claims that it interfered in 2016 election, and has proposed international cooperation to fight common threats including hacking and fake news. Last year, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov lamented that Russian proposals in this direction had been rejected, adding that some countries seem to prefer "demonizing" Russia and Russians to cooperation.
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