Cyber Statecraft Initiative Nonresident Senior Fellow Jason Healey and Program Assistant Anni Piiparinen cowrite for The Diplomat on Chinese retaliation of court cases involving the South China Sea:

Attribution for cyberattacks is said to be notoriously difficult, but sometimes context and timing are damning evidence.

In July, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague conducted a hearing on the territorial dispute in the South China Sea between the Philippines and China. On the third day of the hearing, the Court’s website was suddenly knocked offline. The attack, made public by Bloomberg last week, reportedly originated from China and infected the page with malware, leaving anyone interested in the landmark legal case at risk of data theft.

The two countries are in the midst of a decades-long dispute over the Scarborough Shoal and other territories in the South China Sea, which should come as no surprise to readers of The Diplomat. Just in case, here’s the backstory: In a precedent-setting turn this summer, when the Permanent Court of Arbitration began hearing a case brought by the Philippines that argues that China’s territorial claims violate international law under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Read the full article here.

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