UK Blames China: The Troubling Reality of State-Sponsored Electoral Hacking

Our CEO Camellia Chan recently commented on the troubling revelations that China conducted major hacking operations against the UK electoral process and British politicians in 2021. As reported by Infosecurity Magazine, the UK government directly blamed Chinese state-backed actors for breaching the Electoral Commission’s systems and stealing data on millions of voters.

“It is incredibly concerning that the cyber-attack which took place in 2021 has only today been linked to the cybercriminals responsible,” Camellia told Infosecurity. With major elections happening worldwide this year, including in the UK, she emphasized how “robust cybersecurity measures are needed to ensure threats are detected and dealt with as soon as possible, not only for voter safety but government protection too.”

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) investigation specifically called out the notorious China-based hacking group APT31 for conducting reconnaissance against email accounts belonging to British MPs who are part of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China. While this attack was stopped, it shows the lengths threat actors will go to monitor critics and dissidents.

In her interview, Camellia stressed the importance of quickly “identifying cybercriminals and making them public to ensure others are aware of the threat posed.” Both the UK and US governments have now sanctioned Chinese entities and individuals linked to the 2021 campaigns.

With tensions escalating, we firmly believe that increased international collaboration and information sharing will be critical to combating various forms of sophisticated, state-backed cyber threats that seek to undermine democratic institutions.

Read her full comments and all the details surrounding this geopolitical cyber standoff in the Infosecurity Magazine report:

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