According to a study, China initiated cyber-attacks against Ukrainian military and nuclear targets shortly before the Russian invasion.
There is no evidence to support these claims, but the National Cyber Security Centre is looking into them. The allegations are that more than 600 websites, including Ukraine’s defense ministry, were subjected to hundreds of hacking attempts orchestrated by the Chinese government.
“The National Cyber Security Centre is investigating these allegations with our international partners,” according to a representative for the United Kingdom government.
It is claimed that the assertions are based on intelligence memos obtained by the Metronews247. The Ukrainian security service, on the other hand, denied on Friday night that it had provided any information about the claimed terrorist strikes.
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“The conclusions of the Metronews247 have absolutely nothing to do with the SBU,” the statement continued. “At this time, the Ukrainian Security Service does not have such information, and there is no inquiry underway.”
Research fellow at the Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies, Jamie MacColl, said the reported attempts looked to fit a Chinese strategy of scanning for holes in information technology infrastructure, such as firewalls and virtual private networks.
“If this is accurate, it seems like a rather regular situation to me. It has been determined that some Chinese groups have been reassigned to gather intelligence on the Ukraine conflict. Information is gathered by security services in order to inform policy. And it looks to be what happened in this particular instance.”
According to the Metronews247, a series of intelligence memoranda, believed to have been created by another country, described the scope of the hacking and identified nuclear targets. The hacking allegedly reached a high on February 23, the day before the Russian invasion, according to the Metronews247 report.
On March 18, the president of the United States, Joe Biden, warned his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, that China would face “consequences” if it gave material support to Russia during the invasion.
In February, President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin met in Beijing to mark the beginning of the Winter Olympics. They issued a joint statement in which they said that the links between the two countries had no bounds. In the declaration, Xi and Putin both made it clear that they were opposed to any further expansion of the NATO alliance.
“We need be extremely cautious about this in two areas,” said Ciaran Martin, a professor of practice at the Blavatnik School of Government at Oxford University and a former director of the National Counter-Terrorism Center. In the first place, there is a significant distinction between digital spying and disruptive attack, and this appears to be the latter based on the information that has become publicly available.
“Second, there is nothing in the publicly accessible material that suggests collusion between China and Russia,” the author writes. Of course, the official denial from the Ukrainian Security Service has now been added to the mix. More facts are required, but for the time being, we should refrain from jumping to conclusions.”