Britain on Wednesday encouraged countries like Russia, China, Iran and North Korea to carry out cyber attacks and called for a global effort to counter these online threats.
Foreign Minister Dominic Rab confirmed that an international coalition is necessary to strengthen cyber insecurity against state agents and criminals who want to break democratic norms.
In an online conference organized by the British National Cyber Space Center (NCSC), he said, “These artists are 21st-century industrial-scale vandals. They want to undermine the foundations of our democracy.”
Last week, the G7 Foreign Ministers, a group of seven more industrialized countries, headed by the United Kingdom this year, called for a joint approach to counter global threats, including cyber threats.
Britain has accused Russia of interfering in the 2019 general election, the 2016 Brexit referendum and the 2014 Scottish independence referendum.
Russian institutions have also been blamed for attempting to conduct critical research on coronovirus from British, American and Canadian laboratories.
A British Defense Review in March called for increasing cyber warfare capabilities.
“When criminals and gangs are operating from their territory in states like Russia, they have a responsibility to go after those gangs and not to protect them.”
He said, “We use our capabilities as they are necessary to protect our citizens and protect international cooperation; our adversaries use their power to steal, sabotage and loot the international system.”
On the other hand, London has banned Chinese telecommunications company Huawei, which has been accused by the United States of spying for Beijing, from participating in the deployment of its 5G network, which it denies.
The United States has also undergone the recent crisis of a cybernetrack against a pipeline system last week, and a major hack from software company SolarWinds.
Rab announced a £ 22 million ($ 31 million, € 25.6 million) investment program to help African and Asian countries strengthen their cyber security capabilities.