As news of a widespread cyber hack of U.S. federal agencies reverberates through Washington, D.C., Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) is blasting the Trump administration for what he sees as an inadequate response.
The New York Times reports that the hack penetrated several government agencies, including the Department of Energy, which safeguards the country’s energy grid and designs nuclear weapons.
The Times also reports that intelligence agencies believe the cyber intrusion was carried out by a Russian intelligence agency.
In a tweet on Thursday, Romney said, “The cyber hack is like Russian bombers have been repeatedly flying undetected over our entire country.”
He went on to say it exposes “alarming U.S. vulnerability” and “glaringly inadequate cyber defenses.” And he charged that there has been “inexcusable silence and inaction from the White House.”
“Past time for a national security re-set that prioritizes cybersecurity capabilities and defenses,” he added.
— Senator Mitt Romney (@SenatorRomney) December 17, 2020
In an interview on SiriusXM, Romney said, “It is a hostile act against a nation with whom Russia trades. So we don’t know whether they’ve actually, how much they’ve actually achieved, but what they’re showing is they have extraordinary cyberwarfare capabilities, and they think so little apparently of our capabilities that they’re doing this without much compunction.”
The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency warned that the cyberattack poses a “grave risk to the federal government,” and that the hackers used a wide array of tools to infiltrate agencies’ systems.
Earlier this year, a bipartisan group of lawmakers released a report that warned the country did not have adequate protection to deter cyberattacks from foreign actors such as Russia, Iran, or North Korea.
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