Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 22 August 2019

IBM says no evidence that ‘sensitive’ data was hacked by China

US Justice Department has accused China of running a spying campaign to steal intellectual property from companies

IBM said the company is aware of the reported attacks and has taken extensive counter-measures globally. AP 
IBM said the company is aware of the reported attacks and has taken extensive counter-measures globally. AP 

International Business Machines (IBM) said it doesn’t have any evidence that hackers took "sensitive" company and client information after reports that China’s ministry of state security attacked its systems.

“IBM has been aware of the reported attacks and already has taken extensive counter-measures worldwide as part of our continuous efforts to protect the company and our clients against constantly evolving threats,” Ed Barbini, vice-president for external relations and spokesman for New York-headquartered IBM, said in a text message.

“We take responsible stewardship of client data very seriously, and have no evidence that sensitive IBM or client data has been compromised by this threat,” stated Mr Barbini.

In indictments announced on Thursday, the US Justice Department accused Chinese officials of running a spying campaign for roughly 10 years to steal intellectual property from dozens of companies. Trade secret theft has been a major point of contention in ongoing efforts to ratchet down tensions between the US and China.

Facing increasing global pressure over allegations that their equipment is unsecure and facilitates espionage, Chinese firms are facing a ban from various countries on the import of 5G gears. UK telecoms firm BT is the latest firm barring Huawei 5G equipment from its core network. Australia and New Zealand also announced this year that they would not allow Huawei to be involved in building the next generation 5G systems in their countries.

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Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) and IBM were two of those firms, Reuters reported earlier Thursday. Chinese hackers got into the tech companies’ networks and client computers, Reuters said, citing five unidentified sources familiar with the attacks.

“The security of HPE customer data is our top priority. We are unable to comment on the specific details described in the indictment,” an HPE spokesman said in an email, adding the company sold its managed services provider business to DXC Technology, a Virginia-headquartered end-to-end IT services company, in 2017.

DXC said it was aware of the justice department’s action, adding in a statement that “DXC does not comment concerning reports of specific cyber-events or specific cyberthreat actors.”

Updated: December 21, 2018 11:43 AM

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