Intelligence Chief Keeps Mum on Response to Russian Meddling

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats testify before a Senate committee on Capitol Hill in Washington on Tuesday. He spoke about Russian efforts to interfere in the upcoming midterm elections and said he expected U.S. sanctions to be announced soon

More U.S. sanctions against the Russian Federation may come up in the next few weeks.

The head of the USA intelligence community is again warning about potential Russian meddling in the 2018 midterm elections.

In the "Worldwide Threat" report presented to the U.S. Senate hearing, the U.S. Intelligence organizations outline, in three sections the style and manner of the threats that China presents. "Sanctions are under consideration, and the Secretary of Treasury has indicated, I think as early as next week, he'll be listing some of those sanctions', the outlet wrote".

Coats said that China will spend about US$ 68 billion this year across the world in 68 countries, on initiatives that are anticipated to diminish USA influence around the world, reports CNA.

Russian intelligence and security services are expected to continue to probe US and allied critical infrastructures next year.

The intelligence director echoed the concerns of Navy Admiral Michael Rogers, the outgoing chief of the NSA and U.S. Cyber Command, who told lawmakers last week that Russian Federation hadn't "paid a price" for election interference.

US intelligence agencies determined that Russian Federation sought to influence the 2016 presidential election to boost then-Republican candidate, President Donald Trump.

Speaking about global cyber security, the US intelligence community says that Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea will pose the greatest cyber threats to the United States during the next year. Admiral Mike Rogers, the current NSA director, told the panel Trump had not granted him authority to disrupt Russian hacking.

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"We understand it has to be addressed", Coats said. The indictment issued by the USA special counsel charged them with running a huge but hidden social media trolling campaign aimed in part at helping Trump win. It's a "high priority" led by the offices of Thomas Bossert, assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism, and Rob Joyce, cybersecurity coordinator for the National Security Council.

One of the main attackers, according to Coats, is Russian Federation.

Lawmakers, particularly Democrats, have accused the Trump administration of doing too little to combat hacking of this year's election, when control of the U.S. Congress is up for grabs.

Democrats also have criticized Trump for not doing more to punish Russian Federation for its activities during the 2016 election.

Democratic Senator Martin Heinrich said, "I fear a "whole of government approach" has been a catch-all for 'It's someone else's job'".

Coats said intelligence agencies have been providing intelligence on the matter continuously to the administration.

"At a minimum, we expect Russian Federation to continue using propaganda, social media, false-flag personas, sympathetic spokespeople, and other means of influence to try to exacerbate social and political fissures in the United States", his testimony states.

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