Sábado, 15 Diciembre, 2018

Ex-Homeland chief feared cyberattack on election

Gazette-Mail file Gazette-Mail file
Malita Javier | 22 Junio, 2017, 08:18

"To my current knowledge, the Russian government did not through any cyber intrusion alter ballots, ballot counts or reporting of election results", Johnson said during his opening statement before the House Intelligence Committee. But he said the intelligence he saw showed that Moscow was responsible "beyond a reasonable doubt".

"I'm not going to argue with you, sir", Mr. Johnson said.

Officials in the testimony would not specify which states were targets, but acting deputy undersecretary Jeanette Manfra said the states affected are aware. "I don't think it works just to say it's a big system and diversity will protect us". "The response I got was Federal Bureau of Investigation had spoken to them, they don't want our help".

"As of right now, we have evidence that election-related systems in 21 states were targeted", Manfra told the Senate Intelligence Committee, which investigating Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential election. But the bad news is this will not be their last attempts.

None of the systems targeted or compromised was involved in vote tallying, the report said, and there's no indication Russia's prying changed vote counts in key states.

President Donald Trump's name also came up several times in the hearing. Priestap, asked if the president had acted as an "unwitting agent" for the Kremlin, said he wasn't able to comment.

"I don't blame you for not answering that question", Heinrich said, prompting laughter from the room.

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"Hoping to regain its prior stature, Russia has made a decision to try to weaken us and our allies", Priestap told senators, adding that Russian hackers have attempted to influence previous USA elections, but not to the scope that was seen in last year's contest.

He said that it's only confined to the election infrastructure and not the politicians and not and political parties. The U.S.is too strong and has too many alliances for Russian Federation to want a military conflict with us.

When pressed by King and committee ranking member Adam Schiff (D-CA) on why President Obama did not publicly denounce Russia's activities until after the election, Johnson said it was an effort to avoid appearances of attempting to influence the election.

"I recall clearly that I was not pleased that we were not in there helping patch this vulnerability", Johnson said.

"It's not even like it was a Republican administration trying to hack in the DNC", King said.

In his testimony, Johnson said he found out about the hack of the Democratic National Committee in 2016, "months" after the Federal Bureau of Investigation and DNC were already in contact about the cyberattack.

Johnson and other Obama administration officials were wary about alerting the public or taking any concrete steps to ensure that states had immediate access to cybersecurity aid because, he said, they felt they had to avoid the appearance of meddling in the election.

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One state official also criticized the federal government for not sharing enough information about the hacking.

Former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson testifies before the House Intelligence Committee in an open hearing in the U.S. Capitol Visitors Center June 21, 2017 in Washington, DC.

"No, and I'm not sure I had the authority to do that".

Noting that the hacking happened "at the direction of Vladimir Putin himself", Mr. Johnson said he was moved to try to shield the nation's election system by the "unprecedented" nature of Russian interference in the last election.

Around that time, Johnson said, he started to see reports of "scanning and probing" of state voter registration systems.

At the Senate hearing Wednesday, University of MI election security expert J. Alex Halderman said voting machines across the country can be hacked, and votes changed, warning that "we must start preparing now".

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