Published: Sun, February 18, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

United States intel sees ongoing Russian election meddling

United States intel sees ongoing Russian election meddling

They didn't describe the activity, other than to say it was related to information warfare. "We cannot as a government direct them what to do, but we are certainly spending every effort we can to work with them to provide some answers to this question", Coats said.

Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday said Wednesday the Trump administration takes the continued threat of Russian election meddling "very seriously".

Apart from Pakistan, the "World Wide Threat Assessment" report specified the concerned threats in different areas of the world, marking North Korea as one of the most "volatile" threats to the U.S. in the next year. In addition to North Korea, the officials specifically called out the increasing threats posed by Russia, Iran, and China.

Both state and non-state actors have already demonstrated the use of chemical weapons in Iraq and Syria. According to de Volkskrant, the Dutch intelligence service AIVD was able to monitor the Russians in real time as they launched attacks on us targets, including the State Department, and could see everything they did, every step of the way.

The top intelligence chiefs of the United States were united on Tuesday in declaring that Russian Federation is continuing efforts to disrupt the USA political system and is targeting the 2018 midterm election, following its "successful" operation to sow discord in the last presidential campaign.

Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats said America must redouble its efforts in this area.

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Coats said the details of any meddling needs to be shared with the American people.

USA officials have long anxious that Russian Federation might interfere in the upcoming elections, repeating a campaign of disruption it waged during the 2016 US presidential vote and a series of European elections in 2017. Russian Federation has repeatedly denied this.

American intelligence officials said that Russian hackers are scanning American electoral systems and using bot armies on social media to spread propaganda.

Coats told a hearing of the Senate Intelligence Committee that despite Washington's requests to do more, the Pakistan military is only trying to appear tougher against the Taliban and Haqqani militants. "We will push back in a way that is sufficiently robust that the impact they have on our election won't be great", Pompeo recently told the BBC.

"We do have some capabilities offensively to raise the cost for those who would dare challenge the United States elections", Pompeo said.

His assessment was echoed by all five other intelligence agency heads present at the hearing, including CIA Director Mike Pompeo, who two weeks ago stated publicly he had "every expectation" that Russian Federation will try to influence the coming elections. North Korea's nuclear, biological and chemical warfare programs make it "the most volatile and confrontational WMD threat in the coming year", Coats said.

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Is the United States sufficiently prepared to counter the activity?

Top intelligence officials said on Tuesday that Russian Federation is likely to use bots and people susceptible to their messages to continue to reach their goal of weakening faith in American democracy.

Pyongyang said following that launch as well that that it had test-fired its most advanced missile, putting the USA mainland within range, and also declared itself to be "a responsible nuclear power".

He said the United States needs to come up with penalties for people who try to hack America's critical infrastructure, government or financial institutions, or they'll just keep doing it. "We're using maximum pressure on North Korea in various ways".

- Terror groups and criminal networks will exploit weak governments in Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

"We've had more than a year to get our act together and address the threat posed by Russian Federation and implement a strategy to deter future attacks".

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