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Business News/ News / World/  US raises concern over China, Russia targeting Covid -19 vaccine supply chain

As countries are either in the process of administrating Covid -19 vaccines or are gearing up to do so, the director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center (NCSC), has raised concerns over the efforts by China and Russia to target the vaccine supply chain.

Speaking during a virtual event hosted by The Washington Post, the NCSC top official William Evanina said, "It's a very complex problem, and I would definitely commend the women and men of the Army and the entire government that is part of Operation Warp Speed to ensure that we are able to facilitate that transportation of the vaccine safely full well knowing our adversaries are trying to disrupt that supply chain."

Also Read | What's got Indians excited about Covid shot

While replying to a question on which countries he may be concerned were interfering in the COVID-19 vaccine supply chain, Evanina said, "China and Russia right now."However, he is not the first to raise such concerns.

According to a report by The Hill, Tonya Ugoretz, the FBI's deputy assistant director of the Cyber Readiness, Outreach, and Intelligence Branch, said last month that "nation-state adversaries" were "combining cyber with using more traditional espionage and human sources to try to penetrate organizations" involved in the manufacturing and distribution of Covid-19 vaccines.

Similarly, the IBM had released a report stating that a "global phishing campaign" was targeting the cold storage portion of the COVID-19 vaccine supply chain, with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) putting out a joint alert urging groups involved in vaccine transport and storage to be on guard against cyberattacks, The Hill said.

Last year in September FBI Director Christopher Wray had testified before a Senate Committee that Chinese hackers were targeting the COVID-19 related research."We are seeing very aggressive activity by the Chinese, and in some cases by others, to target our COVID-related research, whether it's vaccines, treatments, testing technology, etc.," Wray said.

According to the latest data by the Johns Hopkins University, globally as many as 91,374,370 people have tested positive for coronavirus and 1,956,635 deaths have been reported.

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Updated: 13 Jan 2021, 08:16 AM IST
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