“[This follows up on] a report that claimed China’s People’s Liberation Army had stolen data from 115 U.S. companies over a seven-year period.
U.S. officials would not comment directly on the report. But they said the U.S. is bulking up its cyber-defenses while stressing a new — albeit controversial — White House executive order aimed at helping protect computer networks of crucial American industries from cyber attacks.
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland stopped short of saying whether the U.S. was in a cyber-war with China.
But she and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said U.S. officials have started a dialogue with the “highest levels” of the Chinese government, including with “officials in the military.”
“It is a major challenge for us in the national security arena,” Carney said, adding that it is known that foreign countries and companies “swipe” sensitive U.S. information.