Four members of China’s military have been indicted by the U.S. government on charges of hacking into credit-reporting agency Equifax and plundering sensitive data on nearly 150 million Americans, the DOJ said.
U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr and other Justice Department officials held a press conference to announce the cyber-related enforcement action. Watch below.
“Today’s announcement comes after two years of investigation. According to the nine-count indictment handed down by a grand jury in Atlanta, four members of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, or PLA – Wang Qian, Wu Zhiyong, Xu Ke, and Liu Lei – are alleged to have conspired to hack Equifax’s computer systems and commit economic espionage,” Attorney General Barr said in prepared remarks.
“This kind of attack on American industry is of a piece with other Chinese illegal acquisitions of sensitive personal data. For years, we have witnessed China’s voracious appetite for the personal data of Americans, including the theft of personnel records from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the intrusion into Marriott hotels, and Anthem health insurance company, and now the wholesale theft of credit and other information from Equifax.”
“Four members of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army are alleged to have hacked Equifax’s computer systems and commit economic espionage… these thefts can feed China’s development of artificial intelligence tools.”—AG Barr— Justice Department (@TheJusticeDept) February 10, 2020