Yesterday, I noted the DoD report which, for the first time, reflected a determination by the US government that a number of cyber intrusions were “attributable directly to the Chinese government and military.” Today, quite predictably, the Chinese government denied those charges:
“China has repeatedly said that we resolutely oppose all forms of hacker attacks,” said a ministry spokeswoman, Hua Chunying. “We’re willing to carry out an even-tempered and constructive dialogue with the U.S. on the issue of Internet security. But we are firmly opposed to any groundless accusations and speculations, since they will only damage the cooperation efforts and atmosphere between the two sides to strengthen dialogue and cooperation.
Much less predictably, but far more amusingly, the global head of cybersecurity for Huawei has added his voice to the chorus. He argues first that the criticism of China is part of a program involving “Corporate America.” [The capital letters are his, not mine.] Even more risibly, he argues that the reason Americans are not buying products from Huawei is because of our fear that the civil liberties loving Chinese will expose our state surveillance program. I am not making this up:
Maybe this is why America doesn’t want us [i.e. Huawei] to sell our equipment to American companies; maybe they will worry that we will see what they do with American Citizens personal data, monitoring and storing of everything that passes through telecommunications.
As Stewart Baker said: “Of course, that explains everything ….” Huawei’s global cybersecurity chief, John Suffolk, is a serious man. He was, after all, the CIO for the entire UK government. Sometimes, I guess, even the serious stumble.