National Security Adviser John Bolton attends a meeting with President Donald Trump and senior military leadership at Al Asad Air Base, Iraq, Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2018. WASHINGTON — The United States is stepping up digital incursions into Russia’s electric power grid in a warning to President Vladimir Putin and a demonstration of how President Donald Trump’s administration is using new authorities to deploy cybertools more aggressively, current and former government officials said. In interviews over the past three months, the officials described the previously unreported deployment of U.S. computer code inside Russia’s grid and other targets as a classified companion to more publicly discussed action directed at Moscow’s disinformation and hacking units around the 2018 midterm elections. Advocates of the more aggressive strategy said it was long overdue, after years of public warnings from the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI that Russia has inserted malware that could sabotage U.S. power plants, oil and gas pipelines, or water supplies in any future conflict with the United States. But it also carries significant risk of escalating the daily digital Cold War between Washington and Moscow. The administration declined to describe specific actions it was taking under the new authorities, which… Read full this story
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