China sees cyber espionage as necessary for national strategy: expert

Beijing sees cyber espionage as necessary for China’s national progress and will not be ending the practice on current terms, an expert said on Friday after the U.S. Justice Department announced hacking charges against two Chinese nationals.

“I think it is very fair to say that China sees this cyber espionage for economic purposes as a necessary component of its national strategy to grow economically and to become a more powerful country, and that it is not going to stop — at least not with the current set of pressure that is being exerted by the U.S. and others,” said Michael Fuchs, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a think tank.

U.S. prosecutors charged the two Chinese citizens for their involvement in a global hacking campaign to steal tech company secrets and intellectual property. They were also accused of stealing the personal information of more than 100,000 members of the U.S. Navy, and were allegedly working with the Chinese government.

Washington’s allies — Australia, Britain and New Zealand — also leveled criticisms at Beijing for economic spying after the U.S. announcement.

“China’s goal, simply put, is to replace the U.S. as the world’s largest global superpower,” FBI Director Christopher Wray said earlier at a press conference.

China, on Friday, responded by saying it resolutely opposed the accusations which it called “slanderous.”

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