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White House Nears Decision On Response To Chinese Cybertheft

The Washington Post reports that the “Obama administration is developing a package of unprecedented economic sanctions against Chinese companies and individuals who have benefited from their government’s cybertheft of valuable U.S. trade secrets.”  

“The U.S. government has not yet decided whether to issue these sanctions, but a final call is expected soon — perhaps even within the next two weeks… Issuing sanctions would represent a significant expansion in the administration’s public response to the rising wave of ­cyber-economic espionage initiated by Chinese hackers.”  

“The sanctions would mark the first use of an order signed by President Obama in April establishing the authority to freeze financial and property assets of, and bar commercial transactions with, individuals and entities overseas who engage in destructive attacks or commercial espionage in cyberspace… The executive order authorizes the Treasury secretary, in consultation with the attorney general and secretary of state, to impose the sanctions on companies, individuals or entities that have harmed national security, or the nation’s economy or foreign policy. It’s not clear how many firms or individuals will be targeted.”

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