US and China agree to work together on cybersecurity

The U.S. and China have agreed to begin working together to cooperate on cybersecurity. The two countries have reached an agreement that something must be done to mitigate this issue which has become more and more troublesome over the past several years.

A great deal of progress regarding the issue of cybersecurity was made during the first high-level meeting between the U.S. and China on the subject. Both countries have agreed to guidelines on sharing computer security information, a hotline open to discuss issues that may arise, a joint cybersecurity exercise and a promise to continue their dialog on concerns they both share such as the theft of proprietary information and trade secrets.

In the past the U.S. and China have had a very trying relationship in regard to cybersecurity. Tensions between them began to rise in 2010 when Google accused Chinese based hackers of directly stealing their intellectual property. Then in 2014, the U.S. Justice department charged five members of People's Liberation Army with stealing trade secrets from companies based in U.S. It is commonly believed by many security experts and tech companies that the Chinese government has sanctioned and even authorised the hacking of both Western companies and even their governments although the Chinese government has consistently denied these allegations.

Top-level U.S. and Chinese officials were present for the agreement that was held in Washington D.C. and both countries plan to meet again in Beijing in May of 2016.

Image Credit: Flickr/Philip Jägenstedt