Peter Navarro discusses how the coronavirus has 'heighted the need' to bring manufacturing home and says the U.S. should receive some form of compensatory damages from China
Get all the latest news on coronavirus and more delivered daily to your inbox. Sign up here.
American universities, pharmaceutical and other healthcare firms are being targeted by Chinese and Iranian hackers in the midst of the coronavirus crisis, according to reports.
The aggressiveness of the cyberattacks is such that some U.S. officials view them as tantamount to war, according to the Wall Street Journal, because they may have hurt research into a COVID-19 vaccine.
The FBI and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, the cyber branch of the Department of Homeland Security, are expected to issue a “public service announcement” regarding China today, the Journal reports.
Iran, meanwhile, is suspected of targeting some of the same facilities, the report claims. Hackers linked to Iran reportedly targeted staff at U.S. drugmaker Gilead Sciences recently, according to Reuters.
“It is difficult, and sometimes impossible, to know what motivates such malfeasance, but any such activity carries with it the risk of triggering accidental, disruptive effects,” one senior administration official said.
A draft of the public warning will accuse China of seeking “valuable intellectual property and public health data through illicit means related to vaccines, treatments and testing,” according to the New York Times.
“China’s long history of bad behavior in cyberspace is well documented, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone they are going after the critical organizations involved in the nation’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Christopher Krebs, the director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, told the Times.
China and the U.S. have been embroiled in a furious war of words since the coronavirus outbreak began, blaming one another for mishandling the pandemic.
Earlier this week, China issued a 30-page rebuttal of what it claims are the top 24 lies told by U.S. politicians over Beijing’s handling of coronavirus, including where it originated and allegations the government tried to silence whistleblowers and cover up vital data.
And earlier this month, top Republicans from a slew of House committees demanded information about what they said is the Chinese Communist Party's "investment in American colleges and universities to further its strategic and propaganda goals" — an initiative they claimed could be "foreign academic espionage."