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International relations

'Hacker armies' linked to China and Russia ramp up cyberattacks

US and Europe grapple with espionage, disinformation and election meddling

Russia and China are said to be stepping up cyberattacks to steal information and spread disinformation.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Hacking and disinformation campaigns linked to Russia and China have stepped up significantly as the coronavirus pandemic has escalated, heightening alarm over cyber threats that Western democracies are often ill-equipped to handle.

The American, British and Canadian governments said Thursday that a hacking group linked to Russian intelligence had targeted labs working on vaccines for the virus in a bid to steal research. U.S. authorities had previously warned research institutions of efforts by Chinese hackers to take data on vaccines and treatments.

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