Global tensions are rising in cyberspace as hackers fire salvos

World

Global tensions are rising in cyberspace as hackers fire salvos

The tempo and ambition of state-backed cyber attacks on governments have escalated during the pandemic

James Cook

It was 9am Sydney time on Friday when Scott Morrison, the Australian prime minister, made an unexpected and startling admission. In televised remarks to the country’s 25 million people, Morrison said Australia was under attack from a foreign power. It was not an attack involving fighter jets, missiles or warships but through a relentless swarm of cyber hacks, unleashed on different arms of the government.

“Australia’s organisations are currently being targeted by a sophisticated, state-based cyber actor,” Morrison said.

The Australian government said healthcare trusts, political groups, educational organisations and the country’s national infrastructure had been under digital attack from hackers looking to use security weaknesses to peer inside their networks...

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