President Obama has ordered the country’s intelligence agencies to review the evidence about the cyber-attacks associated with this year’s election, says Reuters. Specifically, they want to learn about the foreign interactions and he wants a full report delivered before he leaves office on January 20th, 2017.
Obama feels that the activity was “malicious,” and he wants a full review of the hacking that could have contaminated the voting results. The review will go back to the 2008 campaign when China first hacked during the Obama and McCain election, says NPR. Therefore, they are not only focusing on this year’s election.
Obama feels that the country has entered a new threshold and must protect themselves from cyber-attacks in the future and international influences playing a role in the United States elections, says USA Today.
Three Presidential Elections to be Reviewed
There will be three total election periods examined by the committee formed from President Obama. They will span from 2008 to 2016, and most of the review will be classified. It will only be shared with state officials and Congress, but some will be released to the public when the committee feels it is necessary.
In October, the White House accused the Russians of intervening with the election, and on November 8th, Obama had warned Russian President Putin about his interference and the consequences of those actions.
This is an issue that President Obama plans to hand over to President-elect Trump, but not until he first has a full report telling him what is going on.
Russians Likely behind the WikiLeaks Reports
After the Russian government was accused of hacking, the information about Hillary Clinton’s campaign and her emails were released on WikiLeaks. The slow drip of those emails were what made her campaign appear corrupt and possibly tainted the waters for her in the election for good.
Obama wants to capture lessons for what happened in this year’s election, but also to ensure that elections in the past have not been influenced by international hackers.
According to the White House, the investigation will be a “Deep Dive” into the pattern of behavior, so that the country can learn from their mistakes and potentially stop hacking attempts in the future.
Obama has been quoted as saying this is a major priority for him before leaving office.
Trump has commented on the report saying that he does not feel there was international interference in the election, and that he believes it is a laughing point; not a talking point.
The review will supposedly look at all foreign actors that may have played a role in the election and hacking, as well as any attempts to interfere, says NPR. This news comes after the Republicans are promising their own investigation into the Russians hacking the election. However, this will be in conflict of the views of the President-Elect Trump.