China, U.S. Conducting Cyber War Games

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The Guardian's Nick Hopkins reports that the U.S. and China have been conducting war games with the aim of preventing a sudden military escalation between the two countries.

The war games, held in Beijing last June and in Washington last December, were organized through the U.S. Center for Strategic and International Studies and Beijing's China Institute of Contemporary International Relations.

Hopkins says another session is planned for next month.

"This has allowed government officials, and those from the US intelligence agencies, to have contact in a less formal environment," Hopkins writes. "Known as 'Track 1.5' diplomacy, it is the closest governments can get in conflict management without full-blown talks."

"The first of the two exercises saw the US and China describing what they would do if they were attacked by a computer virus like Stuxnet, the malware thought responsible for disabling centrifuges in Iran's nuclear program," writes The Inquirer's Lee Bell. "In the second war game, both sides had to describe their reaction if the attack was known to have been launched from the other side."

"The US apparently agreed to the exercises in the hope of airing its frustrations at the growing number of cyber attacks aimed at its government, critical infrastructure and other organisations, but unsurprisingly its efforts appear to have hit another Chinese brick wall," writes The Register's Phil Muncaster.

"The games follow recent accusations by the U.S. and European governments that China has engaged in a covert hacking campaign that has stolen billions of dollars' worth of military and industrial secrets from private firms and government agencies," notes International Business Times' Oliver Tree.