The number of Chinese cyberattacks targeting Taiwan Foreign Ministry’s computer systems in 2020 was about 39 times greater than the number of attacks in 2018.
According to the report, there was an average of 2,100 attacks daily last year, and about 770,000 attacks in total, up from about 20,000 attacks in 2018.
The information security officials have expressed grave concern about the Chinese cyberattacks as they have also become more sophisticated, source said.
“Last year, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs began more closely monitoring all probes and scans of its systems, taking the stance that it would rather risk erroneously terminating a legitimate connection than overlooking a genuine attack,” the source said.
Of the total attacks detected in 2020, around 410,000 were scans and probes of the Taiwan Foreign ministry’s computers and close to 150,000 were attempts to break into its e-mail system.
This report comes as 10 Chinese warplanes entered Taiwan’s air defence identification zone (ADIZ) on Monday, the 17th day of such intrusions in March alone.
Air defence identification zones are early warning systems that help countries detect incursions into their airspace.
Any aircraft entering such an area is supposed to report its route and purpose to the “host” nation, though the zones are classified as international airspace and pilots are not legally bound to make such a notification.
The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft involved in the mission were four J-16 multirole fighters, four J-10 multirole fighters, one Y-8 anti-submarine warfare plane and one KJ-500 airborne early warning and control plane, Focus Taiwan reported citing the Ministry of National Defense (MND).
Beijing claims full sovereignty over Taiwan, a democracy of almost 24 million people located off the southeastern coast of mainland China, despite the fact that the two sides have been governed separately for more than seven decades.
Taipei, on the other hand, has countered the Chinese aggression by increasing strategic ties with democracies including the US, which has been repeatedly opposed by Beijing.