Events like Def Con and Black Hat are pretty popular hacker conferences which are held in countries like the US. In fact they are expected to take place in August later this year, and apparently it seems that the US government might be worried enough about Chinese hackers that they could be restricting their visas and preventing them from entering the country.
This is according to an unnamed senior administration official who revealed the news to Reuters. According to the official, this is one of the ways that the US government can prevent Chinese hackers from entering the country and attending such events, and also to curb cyber espionage from China.
Apparently this is also done to put pressure on China after the US had recently charged five Chinese military officers with hacking into US companies to steal trade secrets. China has since denied those charges, claiming that they were “made up”. As far as the organizers and founders of the hacker conferences are concerned, this is the first they have heard of it.
Unsurprisingly members of the hacking community and security professionals don’t seem too pleased by this piece of news. Some of them have even gone as far as calling it racist, while others believe that this does not contribute to a positive community. According to the official, “We’ve tried to have a constructive dialogue. The State Department and the Defense Department have traveled to China to share evidence of hacking by the (People’s Liberation Army), but those types of interchanges have not sparked a lot of progress or reciprocity.”
What do you guys think? Is this a good way to prevent cyber espionage, by preventing hackers from attending such conferences?