Britain’s Ministry of Defense has been hit by a major data breach, resulting in the unauthorized access of personal information of UK military personnel.

The ministry’s servers were infiltrated by hackers, who obtained data on officials and current service personnel, with British media suggesting that the cyber attack was carried out by China.

Hackers successfully infiltrated payroll systems, compromising the personal information of ministry officials, current service personnel, and veterans. The breached data included their names and bank details, Sky News reported, claiming that China-affiliated individuals were behind the cyber attack.

“The government will not name the country involved, but Sky News understands this to be China,” read the Sky News report.


Tobias Ellwood, a Conservative MP and former soldier, told Sky News that China “was probably looking at the financially vulnerable with a view that they may be coerced in exchange for cash.”

In reaction, China’s foreign ministry said it “firmly opposes and fights all forms of cyber attacks” and “rejects the use of this issue politically to smear other countries.”

The UK ministry became aware of the attack a few days ago and has been diligently investigating its magnitude and consequences.

Reports stated that officials from the United Kingdom government will address Parliament regarding the attack on May 7, with Grant Shapps, defense secretary, expected to make a statement in the afternoon.

Back in March, London accused Beijing of directing attacks against the UK’s Electoral Commission watchdog in 2021 and orchestrating a series of online “reconnaissance” efforts targeting the email accounts of British lawmakers, a charge China denies. (Press