China Isn't Sure North Korea Hacked Sony, Nor Whether It Happened On China's Territory
The U.S. government announced last week that the North Korea regime was behind the destructive cyber attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment, but one country still isn't convinced. On Monday, Chinese officials said there's not enough evidence that North Korea hacked Sony, disagreeing with the recent conclusion made by U.S. investigators. The Chinese government also refused to directly condemn the cyber attack on Sony, but did emphasize that China denounces any cyber breaches of national security.
In a statement released by China's Foreign Ministry, spokesperson Hua Chunying said there were not "enough facts" supporting the claim the North Korea orchestrated the massive Sony hack about a month before The Interview was set to be released in theaters. Sony canceled the Kim Jung-un assassination-parody film last week after the hackers, called "Guardians of Peace," made new threats on American movie theaters.
Although not directly addressing North Korea, Hua said the Chinese government opposed hackers who attacked national security "through making use of the facilities of another country." He added that China would like to open a dialogue with other nations about blocking cyber terrorism.
According to CBS News, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi made these comments in a phone call with Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday night. The Chinese government is also reportedly worried about the assertions that China was used as the third-party hacking site by the hackers. (China has allegedly been used as the third-party country in cyber attacks led by North Korea in the past.)
The FBI and Department of Homeland Security formally announced last week that evidence linked the massive Sony hack to North Korea. The federal government won't elaborate too much on the connection, but said it was confident in its conclusion.
On Friday, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson released a statement calling the security breach "an attack on our freedom of expression and way of life." President Obama called the attack "cybervandalism" and vowed that the United States would "respond" to North Korea, though it's still unclear how the U.S. government will go about penalizing the regime.
Meanwhile, North Korea insists its government is not responsible for the cyber attack, which wiped away Sony's internal servers, compromising the personal information of thousands of employees — including high-profile celebrities. On Sunday, North Korea issued new threats against the United States, blaming the U.S. government for "recklessly" spreading propaganda. The North Korean government said it would carry out strikes against the Pentagon and Washington, D.C. if the United States responds, calling America a "cesspool of terrorism."
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