Officials are “actively defending against foreign interference and influence operations in U.S. elections,” US Cyber Command and the National Security Agency said in a statement, “specifically by focusing on how adversaries seek to undermine U.S. interests and prosperity, the will to vote of the populace, as well as their belief in the sanctity and security of their elections.”
As the November midterm elections draw near, US military and intelligence authorities announced Thursday that they are stepping up their efforts to protect the democratic process from foreign hacking and disinformation.
When questioned last month about whether the conflict in Ukraine might prevent Russia from interfering in the US midterm elections, FBI Director Christopher Wray responded that he was “quite confident the Russians can walk and chew gum” and that US officials were putting measures in place to counter that possibility.
According to the command, US intelligence authorities have issued a warning that Iran, China, and Russia may attempt to sway voter opinions or meddle with the US election process.
The Department of Homeland Security stated that Russia will probably continue to utilise its cyber and information operation skills to undermine trust in US public institutions and promote strife in the US in a separate intelligence bulletin released to state and local officials this week.
US officials also “have to be concerned about hybrid threats,” Wray said at a cybersecurity conference at Fordham University in New York. That includes a situation in which foreign operatives might use an “unremarkable cyber incident” to sow “panic or lack of confidence in our election infrastructure,” Wray said.
The new DHS research does not particularly address elections but rather focuses on Russia’s broader cyber activity against numerous sectors.