Hacking Interfering with Vaccine Research

Chinese and Iranian hackers are targeting American research.

In yet another escalation of tensions between the United States and China, some officials have accused China of attacks on American public health. Hackers from China as well as Iran are aggressively targeting American universities, pharmaceutical and other health-care firms in a way that could be hampering their efforts to find a vaccine to counter the coronavirus pandemic, U.S. officials said.

Since at least the first week in January, the two countries have waged cyberattacks against a range of American firms and institutions that are working to find a vaccine for COVID-19.

The Department of Homeland Security and the FBI suspected hackers linked with the Chinese government of attempting to steal U.S. research. They accused Chinese hackers, as well as spies, of trying to pilfer intellectual property and other information related to coronavirus treatments.

A statement from the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and the FBI said, “The FBI is investigating the targeting and compromise of U.S. organizations conducting COVID-19 related research by [People’s Republic of China]-affiliated cyber actors and non-traditional collectors. The potential theft of this information jeopardizes the delivery of secure, effective, and efficient treatment options.” Although Iran has been implicated also, their statement made no mention of them.

Their “public service announcement” urged medical research organizations to be vigilant and report suspicious cyber activity. China allegedly steals billions of dollars in U.S. intellectual property annually.

As the Lord Leads, Pray with Us…

  • That hackers would be identified and stopped from any further incursions into research being done on vaccines in America and abroad.
  • For greater protections and cybersecurity across all agencies of the federal government as well as pubic and private industries and universities.

Sources: Wall Street Journal New York Times, CyberScoop


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