China’s Willing to Negotiate Cyber Security

Tom Donilon Asia Society

Tom Donilon Asia Society (Photo credit: Asia Society)

The White House demanded Monday that the Chinese government stop the widespread theft of data from American computer networks and agree to “acceptable norms of behavior in cyberspace.”

Tom Donilon, National Security Advisory to the President, addressed the growing challenge of cyber-security to the United States’ economic relationship with China.

“Economies as large as the United States and China have a tremendous shared stake in ensuring that the Internet remains open, interoperable, secure, reliable, and stable,” Donilon said. “Both countries face risks when it comes to protecting personal data and communications, financial transactions, critical infrastructure, or the intellectual property and trade secrets that are so vital to innovation and economic growth.”

This claim came two days after China’s foreign minister, Yang Jiechi, rejected a mounting list of evidence that his country’s military was involved in cyberattacks on American corporations and some government agencies.

In opposition to turning cyberspace into a battlefield, China on Tuesday called for Internet rules and cooperation.

“China has always urged the international community to build a peaceful, secure, open and cooperative cyberspace and opposed turning it into a new battlefield,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a daily press briefing, according to Xinhua English News Channel.

Two major Chinese military websites, including that of the Defence Ministry, were subject to more than 140,000 hacking attacks a month last year, almost two-thirds from the United States, the ministry said last month, according to Reuters.

The Pentagon’s Cyber Command will create 40 offensive cyber-teams by the fall of 2015 to help defend the nation against major computer attacks and assist combat commands as they plan offensive capabilities, Gen. Keith Alexander testified to Congress on Tuesday.

Alexander said that 13 of the new cyber-teams would defend against destructive attacks, stating, “I would like to be clear that this team…is an offensive team.”

Wang Hongguang, deputy commander of the PLA’s Nanjing Military District, called the United States “a thief calling others a thief.” But asked if China should develop its hacking capabilities for counter-attacks, Wang told Reuters: “Personally, I think we will. If the enemy has it we’ll want to have it too. We must have the means at least to defend ourselves.”

U.S. officials say they expect hacking to be one of the thorniest issues between Washington and Beijing in the coming months.

“Increasingly, U.S. businesses are speaking out about their serious concerns about sophisticated, targeted theft of confidential business information and proprietary technologies through cyberintrusions emanating from China on an unprecedented scale,” Mr. Donilon said in a wide-ranging address to the Asia Society in New York, according to the New York Times.

“Cyberspace needs rules and cooperation, not wars,” Hua said.


2 thoughts on “China’s Willing to Negotiate Cyber Security

  1. Pingback: World News: US Warns China on Cyber Security | Censorship in America

  2. Pingback: Cyber fear? | CaribbeanMarvel

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