Most Powerful Nations Ban Hacking for Commercial Gain

by Keith Wagstaff /  / Updated 

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China, Russia, the United States and other countries attending the G-20 conference in Turkey agreed on Monday to not engage in cyber espionage for commercial gain.

Relations between China and the U.S. have been strained by reports of Chinese hackers infiltrating U.S. agencies and corporations, an accusation Beijing has called "groundless."

At stake is anywhere from $375 billion to $575 billion, the amount a recent study said cybercrime costs the global economy every year.

"We are living in an age of Internet economy that brings both opportunities and challenges to global growth," read a statement from the conference in Antalya, Turkey.

It went on to say that "no country should conduct" computer-enabled "theft of intellectual property, including trade secrets or other confidential business information, with the intent of providing competitive advantages to companies or commercial sectors."

Chinese President Xi Jinping promised something similar in September, when he visited Washington and agreed that "neither country’s government will conduct or knowingly support cyber-enabled theft of intellectual property."

Whether or not the G-20 nations stick to their pledge remains to be seen, especially as many of the countries have never admitted to cyber espionage for commercial purposes in the first place.

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