Chinese government-affiliated hackers targeted Noubar Afeyan's biotech company Moderna Inc, one of the leading US COVID-19 vaccine developers, earlier this year in an attempt to steal valuable data, Reuters reported, citing a US security official tracking Chinese hackers.
Last week, the US Department of Justice released an indictment that accused two Chinese citizens of espionage. The document says the Chinese hackers "conducted reconnaissance" on the computer network of a Massachusetts biotech firm that worked on a coronavirus vaccine in January.
Massachusetts-based Moderna, which announced the development of a COVID-19 vaccine in January, confirmed to Reuters that it is in contact with the FBI and has been notified of the alleged “information reconnaissance activities” of the hacker group mentioned in the indictment.
China on Friday denied the accusations, calling them unfounded. China does not need to engage in theft of technology and it does not do it, said Wang Wenbin, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry during a briefing.