The US State Department said Thursday that hackers took around 60,000 emails, although none of them classified, in an attack which Microsoft has blamed on China.
“It was approximately 60,000 unclassified emails that were exfiltrated as a part of that breach,” State Department spokesman Matthew Miller told reporters.
“Classified systems were not hacked. These only related to the unclassified system,” he said.
Miller said that the State Department has not formally assigned blame but had no reason to doubt Microsoft’s finding that the hackers were from China.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken raised the hacking in July when he met with senior Chinese official Wang Yi in Jakarta on the sidelines of a Southeast Asian meeting.
The United States has described China as its top competitor, with Blinken earlier Thursday saying that Beijing was determined to replace the United States as the world’s top power.
A State Department report issued Thursday warned in dire terms about China’s efforts in the information sphere, saying that Beijing’s “digital authoritarianism” and disinformation could reshape the world if unchecked.