Exclusive: DBT can reveal that state-backed Chinese hackers are infiltrating the inventory systems of major Australian chemists looking for baby formula supplies.
DBT’s China correspondent Jenna Henry was invited to watch the malicious hackers at work, on the strict condition of anonymity.
“Oh wow, it looks like Chemist Warehouse at Yagoona in Sydney has just taken delivery of 300 cans,” says one hacker.
It’s understood the hackers are feeding the information to their Australian-based syndicates who are then buying as much baby formula as possible, and taking it to China.
“Quick, get someone to Yagoona,” says the hacker. “It looks like those 300 tins are going to be available there in around three hours.”
The Australian government announced yesterday that it’s aware of the cyber attacks, but stopped short naming China, or what it’s looking for.
Covid-19 has led to an increase in Chinese demand for Australian baby formula, with consumers hoping the formula’s immunity boosting properties will keep the virus at bay.
“It’s very disheartening to hear that Chinese hackers are acting in this way,” says trade analyst Dr Henry Driscoll. “Especially as Coronavirus started in China.”
More to come.