Every day, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group is the target of more than 300 million cyberattacks.
That’s according to founder and former executive chairman Jack Ma, who took the stage on Tuesday at the Forbes Global CEO Conference in Singapore to accept the Forbes Lifetime Achievement Award and share some of the group’s successes over the past couple of decades.
During his 45-minute conversation with Forbes editor-in-chief Steve Forbes, the billionaire business magnate disclosed that his company suffers unrelenting hacking attempts — “but we deal [with] it,” Ma said. “We don’t have even one problem.”
His comments come eight months after hackers in China attempted to access more than 20 million accounts on Alibaba’s Taobao website using the group’s cloud computing service.
“Alibaba’s system was never breached,” a company spokesperson said in early February.
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Although Alibaba at the time didn’t remark on the security measures that managed to halt the attack, Ma on Tuesday attributed the firm’s ability to block hackers to its advanced tech capabilities.
“It’s not because of how smart people are; it’s how smart technology [is],” he said at the conference. “We teach the machine how to catch the bad guys. … We teach the machine all the ways people [are] cheating. The machine remembers over a millions of ways of cheating, so when you start cheating, the machine already knows you are cheating.”
He added, “Give my data to a machine. I trust a machine more than I trust people.”
Ma retired from Alibaba in September, coinciding with his 55th birthday and the 20th anniversary of the company’s founding. He will remain on the board of directors until 2020, with CEO Daniel Zhang taking over the reins.
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