Several Western countries have accused hacker groups, presented as supported by the Chinese state, of leading a global cyberespionage campaign against figures critical of Beijing, democratic institutions and companies in various sensitive sectors.
American justice, for its part, indicted seven Chinese nationals accused of having led a malicious computer hacking campaign sponsored by the state, targeting the White House, Congress, the Senate, but also parliamentarians who are members of IPAC (Inter-parliamentary Alliance on China), including Belgian federal deputy Samuel Cogolati. The United Kingdom also reacted by summoning the Chinese ambassador and imposing sanctions against this group of Chinese pirates (APT31).

For Samuel Cogolati, warned in 2023 by the Center for Cybersecurity Belgium (CCB) of having been the target of these hackers (APT31), “the firmness displayed by the USA and the United Kingdom contrasts with the passivity of European governments. It is incredible that these Chinese cyberattacks are pursued abroad, but remain unpunished here at this stage”, thunders the federal deputy Ecolo who continues: “When Belgium has tangible evidence to attribute a cyberattack to a foreign power, this act malicious must be denounced as such through diplomatic channels and pursued through legal channels. And in this specific case, this malicious act targets a central democratic body, Parliament!

Federal MP Ecolo therefore asks the Belgian government to be completely transparent about Chinese cyberattacks: “Learning the identity of the perpetrators of a cyberattack targeting Belgian parliamentarians via an indictment by the American justice system is worrying! All clarity must be made on the duration, nature and number of victims of the Chinese cyberattacks which targeted Belgium. An investigation is necessary to find out whether sensitive or classified data could have been exfiltrated from Brussels to Beijing.
As a reminder, Samuel Cogolati is one of the 10 Europeans sanctioned by China in 2021, following EU sanctions for Beijing’s repression against the Uighurs. He calls for a democratic push: “Chinese hackers do not visit our servers for their pleasure. These attacks are methodical, targeted against defenders of democracy and human rights and organized in the name of the Chinese communist regime. We must protect our institutions against foreign interference, particularly in the context of the upcoming elections. We cannot let China corrupt the elected representatives of Flemish Belang to spy on us and attack democratic elected officials who denounce the atrocities committed in Xinjiang.”

The Ecolo green party promised to call on the Prime Minister, the Minister of Justice (responsible for State Security) and the Minister of the Interior (responsible for the Center for Cybersecurity Belgium) to strengthen cybersecurity in Belgium and to pursue these hackers.
China has rejected accusations from the American, British and New Zealand governments of these cyberattacks against their public institutions, and said it had “strongly protested” to the parties concerned.

Billy Omeonga

Billy Omeonga graduated in Journalism and Creative Writing. I have a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. I am currently pursuing an MBA at the University of the People in the United States of America. I love activities that involve ideas and critical thinking. I am passionate about nature and protecting the environment. I believe in protecting our planet and its natural resources. I hate dishonest and pessimistic people. Honesty is an integral part of my view of the world and it is a value in which I strongly believe. I speak French and English fluently. In my free time, I like to read and play the piano. Also, I disapprove of the unreliability. I am a reliable person, so I expect a certain level of reliability from those I am reliable to.

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