FBI Assistant Director of Counterintelligence: Russia will continue election meddlingBaltimore Post-Examiner

FBI Assistant Director of Counterintelligence: Russia will continue election meddling

WASHINGTON:  FBI Assistant Director of Counterintelligence Bill Priestap said Russia will continue to try to influence the outcome of U.S. elections.

“I believe the Russians will absolutely try to continue to conduct influence operations in the U.S,” Priestap told the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on Wednesday.

Priestap, who testified alongside a panel of Department of Homeland Security cyber specialists, said Russia has tried to influence American elections since the Cold War-era, but that Moscow’s 2016 meddling far surpassed previous sabotage attempts.

Priestab said Russia meddled in the election so as to undermine the candidacy of Democrat Hillary Clinton and help facilitate the victory of now-President Donald Trump.

Priestab said Russia’s dissemination of “fake news” on social media sites is illustrative of the Kremlin’s attempt to “undermine the legitimacy” of the American electoral process. Priestab said America’s European allies also are vulnerable to Russian attempts at electoral sabotage.

Dr. Samuel Liles, who is DHS’s acting director of Cyber Division, Office of Intelligence and Analysis, testified that during the 2016 election cycle 21 state election systems were targets of Russian sabotage but that none of those systems were involved in tallying votes.

The panel unanimously testified that Russian sabotage attempts did not affect the outcome of the 2016 election.

The panel dodged questions as to whether members of Trump’s campaign team colluded with high-ranking Russian officials.

This article is republished with permission from Talk Media News 


About the author

Bryan Renbaum

Bryan is a reporter and political columnist with Baltimore Post-Examiner and has broken multiple stories involving athletic scandals. He has been interviewed by ABC's Good Morning America as well as Baltimore area radio stations. Bryan has both covered and worked in the Maryland General Assembly and is extremely knowledgeable of politics, voting patterns and American history. In addition to his regular duties, Bryan freelances for several publications and performs investigative research. He has a B.A. in Political Science. Contact the author.
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