Following Google's announcement on Wednesday that hundreds of Gmail accounts had been hacked by a campaign stemming from Jinan, China, the Chinese government is refuting claims that it was involved in any way.
The situation has become rather tense for a number of reasons, especially by the fact that many of those Gmail accounts belonged to "senior U.S. government officials, Chinese political activists, officials in several Asian countries (predominantly South Korea), military personnel and journalists," according to Google's official blog.
Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei addressed the situation and told reporters:
"Blaming these misdeeds on China is unacceptable. Hacking is an international problem and China is also a victim. The claims of so-called support for hacking are completely unfounded and have ulterior motives."
Google hasn't placed the blame directly on China - although the two have definitely had their spats over privacy, censorship and other issues in the past.
Nevertheless, an investigation has been launched stateside by the White House and the Pentagon to determine the extent (and more into the source) of the problem, but it's a bit of a gray area as only personal email accounts seem to have been affected.
The security breach has been attributed to phishing and malware scams, which are quite common all over the globe. But given the targets of the scam, we're likely going to see more scrutiny and tension over this situation in the days ahead.
Related coverage on ZDNet:
- Google: Hundreds of Gmail accounts in U.S., Asia hacked
- 10 things you should know about the Pentagon's new cyberwarfare strategy
- Can a cyber-attack really be considered an 'act of war'?