WASHINGTON – In a startling revelation, FBI Director Chris Wray disclosed at a recent conference that China's cyber espionage capabilities are so extensive, they bigger than the efforts of all other major nations combined.
While the U.S. government has long been cautioning against the cyber threats emanating from China, Wray's statements took the conversation to a new level of urgency.
"China already has a bigger hacking program than every other major nation combined," Wray said. "If each one of the FBI's cyber agents and intelligence analysts focused on China exclusively, Chinese hackers would still outnumber our cyber personnel by at least 50 to 1."
Though the Chinese embassy in Washington did not respond immediately for comment, it's worth noting that China has consistently refuted claims of engaging in cyber espionage against the U.S. Just last month, the embassy accused American officials and media of exaggerating and "hyping up" such allegations.
Wray made these comments at mWISE, a cybersecurity conference in Washington, D.C., organized by Mandiant. Mandiant was acquired by Google's parent company, Alphabet, in 2022.
His remarks come on the heels of a series of high-profile cyber attacks attributed to China, including a massive email breach affecting top U.S. government officials.
Kevin Mandia, CEO of Mandiant, echoed Wray's sentiments at the conference, stating, "The top innovator on offense is China."
So, next time you're sipping your coffee and pondering over the latest cybersecurity threats, remember that the scale of China's cyber capabilities—which mostly are after your intellectual property—is something to keep a close eye on. With GenAI they will be able to launch highly convincing social engineering attacks. Train those users, and create the strongest security culture you can.