The report from McAfee that almost-but-not-quite blamed China for a world-wide hacking network that has broken into 72 governmental organisations around the world has been dismissed as "irresponsible" by the nation's state-controlled newspaper.
When McAfee released its report on the wide-scale malware-driven network - dubbed Operation Shady RAT, and covered in more detail over here - it was clear from its phraseology and the surprising absence of a certain country from its list of victims that it was placing the blame firmly in China's hands for a programme of spying it claims could only have been the work of a 'nation state'.
While Chinese officials have yet to comment, today's issue of The People's Daily, the mainstream newspaper used to disseminate the ruling party's ideology amongst the masses, condemns McAfee for the report and claims that China is innocent.
"Linking China to Internet hacking attacks is irresponsible," the paper states. "The McAfee report claims that a 'state actor' engaged in hacking for a large-scale Internet espionage operation, but its analysis clearly does not stand up to scrutiny."
This is far from the first time that China has been accused of attacking other networks: last month, South Korean authorities claimed that Chinese hackers had made off with the account details of some 35 million of its citizens, while back in June Google pointed the finger at government-sponsored hackers for a large-scale intrusion into its Gmail webmail system.
McAfee has not yet responded to our request for comment, and the Chinese government is remaining typically tight lipped on the matter.