China says Australian cyber attack suggestion is ‘baseless speculation’

China says Australian cyber attack suggestion is ‘baseless speculation’

Shanghai| China has attacked suggestions it was behind a cyber hacking attack on the computer systems of Australia’s three major political parties as “baseless speculation”.

While Beijing did not directly deny it was behindan attack on the Liberal, National and Labor parties’ networks, it said said China was firmly opposed to cyber attacks and hacking and accused the media of tarnishing China’s reputation.

“One should present abundant evidence when investigating and determining the nature of a cyberspace activity, instead of making baseless speculations and firing indiscriminate shots at others,” a spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry said.

Alastair MacGibbon

Alastair MacGibbon, National Security Adviser and head of the Australian Cyber Security Centre,. Alex Ellinghausen

“Irresponsible reports, accusations, pressurising and sanctions will only heighten tensions and confrontation in cyberspace and poison the atmosphere for cooperation.”

The spokesperson was responding to questions about a major security risk revealed by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Monday who attributed the attack on the parties’ networks to a foreign government. Suspicion has fallen on Chinese spies for the attack.

Security sources toldThe Australian Financial Reviewthe techniques and signatures used by the hackers had not been seen before by Australian investigators or among fellow Five Eyes intelligence sharing members and other western spy agencies.

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