Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has said the country’s parliament has been the target of “advanced attacks”. Political parties in the country are also said to have been attacked by state hackers.
The attack on the political parties came to light in the inquiry into that of the parliament, according to the prime minister. “Our cyber experts believe an advanced state unit is responsible for the malicious activity,” Morrison said. The attack took place a few weeks ago, several months before the election; which are held in May. There would be no evidence that data was diverted.
The Prime Minister has ordered the Australian Cyber Security Center to assist political parties and the Australian Electoral Council with technical assistance. In addition, the government has ‘imposed several measures to maintain the integrity of the electoral system’. The attack on the parties’ networks took place at Liberal and Labor as well as the Nationals.
It is not known which state is behind the attacks, but according to the Sydney Morning Herald, characteristics of the operation point to China. The goal is also not clear, but there are fears of attempts to influence the elections.