BEIJING—Some of China's most prominent hackers plan to issue a call for their peers in the country to steer clear of commercial cybercrime, a move aimed at cutting down on Chinese cyberattacks that experts say often target foreign Internet users and companies.
While it's unclear how effective such an appeal will be, it is a sign that some with roots in China's hacking culture are concerned that growth in the underground cybertheft industry could draw both louder foreign complaints and tighter domestic restrictions, which could restrict their freedom of action and affect the legitimate network-security sector as well.The story implies there is some private hacking activity taking place from China that is not government sponsored. It is my contention that all serious hacking taking place from China has at least tacit government approval. And at most, it could not exist in China without full government sponsorship. This silly story is akin to Italian-Americans taking offense at the term MAFIA and making it extremely politically incorrect to suggest that a MAFIA even exists. I expect better journalism from the WSJ.