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‘Active threat’: China’s cyber-intrusion on British MPs exposed

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Earlier this year, IPAC reported to Britain’s National Cyber Security Centre, a major cyber attack it had suffered in March, which took down its website for several hours.

Junior minister James Cleverly said he would not discuss intelligence in public. Cleverly was responding to urgent questions from backbenchers about the Microsoft hack.

The hack of the Microsoft Exchange, which began in January, gave the Chinese access to tens of thousands of computers around the world. Five Eyes countries, Japan, the EU and NATO all named China as the culprit in the first joint attribution that the democracies have made.

A grand jury in the US indicted three Chinese security officials over hacks of companies, universities and foreign government entities.

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MPs from all parties slammed the government for not announcing any sanctions or charges like the US has done.

Speaking separately to a Chatham House audience, Kevin Rudd said cyber attacks waged by authoritarian regimes were a “regular reality” when he was prime minister.

“Certainly in our periods in office, it was an active and real concern,” he told former Labour frontbencher David Miliband.

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