Until recently, the word “Hafnium” most commonly referred to an obscure atomic element—atomic number 72 in the Periodic Table of the Elements. It was named for the city where it was discovered in 1923—Copenhagen, Denmark, whose Latin name is Hafnia. Chemically similar to zirconium, it is used for control rods in nuclear reactors.
But some readers of this blog are keenly aware of a newer use of this word. Hafnium is also the name of a state-sponsored threat actor said to be connected to the Chinese government. Its goal is to exfiltrate data from Western organizations of all types, including government and military secrets, medical research, and information on critical infrastructure.