The Pentagon Is Ready To Launch Cyberattacks If Russia Interferes With Midterm Elections
The US Government is prepared to launch a cyberattack against Russia if the country interferes with the 2018 mid-term elections as it did during Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign.
A report from the Center for Public Integrity revealed that the plan will focus on investigating potential hacks following the November 6 election cycle.
While exact details are classified, the report, citing anonymous U.S. officials, says military hackers have been preparing for cyberwar and have been given permission to expose certain Russian networks if the order is given.
Among the list of Russia’s potential threats are directly tampering with voter registration and the changing of voting tallies, according to Business Insider.
The report says the attack would need to go further than “trying to sway peoples’ opinion or the way people might vote.”
Following the 2016 general elections, US officials in the military have been placing a greater emphasis on cyber warfare during military strategy meetings.
Military officials have become increasingly aware of Russia’s continued attempts to spread misinformation via social media, including a $35 million plan to create fake social media accounts on Facebook which could then be used to spread disinformation.
President Trump, who has come under fire for Russia’s involvement in his electoral wins, signed an executive order earlier in 2018 which allows for easier deployment of digital weapons when national security is at risk. Part of that order allows for retaliatory attacks on the orders of Defense Secretary James Mattis and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats
National Security Adviser John Bolton has gone so far as to promise an offensive plan to be enacted by any country that digitally attacks the United States.