US accuses China of ramping up hacking efforts amid trade dispute

Chinese hacking efforts aimed at theft of U.S. technology has sharply increased ahead of President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump alludes to possible 2024 run in White House remarks Trump threatens to veto defense bill over tech liability shield Tiger King's attorney believes they're close to getting pardon from Trump MORE's planned meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping over the two nations' trade dispute, according to a U.S. government report.

The Associated Press reports that Trump's top trade representative Robert LighthizerRobert (Bob) Emmet LighthizerWhiskey, workers and friends caught in the trade dispute crossfire GOP senator warns quick vote on new NAFTA would be 'huge mistake' Pelosi casts doubt on USMCA deal in 2019 MORE issued a report Tuesday detailing a "sharp rise" in Chinese hacking efforts over the past several months ahead of the planned meeting at the Group of 20 (G-20) summit in Argentina later this month.


“China fundamentally has not altered” its policies related to theft of foreign technology, “and indeed appears to have taken further unreasonable actions,” Lighthizer's report reads, according to the AP.

Hacking attacks, the report continues, have “increased in frequency and sophistication" in the last year.

Asked about the report, Geng Shuang, a spokesman for China's foreign minister, called it the result of "trade frictions" that were "natural" between two countries.

“The key is to engage in dialogue and consultation on the issue based on mutual respect, equality and good faith,” Geng said at a news briefing, according to the AP.

Trump is set to huddle with Xi at the upcoming G-20 summit, where the two are likely to discuss escalating back-and-forth tariff measures the two nations have traded for months.

Reuters reported this week that some U.S. farmers have been forced to watch their crops, normally exported to China, rot instead due to inability to sell their product.

“I’ve never seen things this bad,” soybean farmer Russell Altom told Reuters. “I know several farmers who hired lawyers, to see if they can sue over the pricing and fees issues.”