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GOV/MIL Trump Administration Hasn’t Briefed Congress on New Rules for Cyberattacks, Lawmakers Say
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  1. #1
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    Trump Administration Hasn’t Briefed Congress on New Rules for Cyberattacks, Lawmakers Say

    Some lawmakers are concerned they lack oversight of the military’s increasing use of cyber weapons

    By Dustin Volz
    Updated July 10, 2019 6:13 pm ET
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-a...ay-11562787360

    WASHINGTON—The Trump administration hasn’t allowed members of Congress to read a classified directive President Trump issued almost a year ago outlining new rules for the military’s use of cyber weapons, despite repeated requests, according to lawmakers and others familiar with the matter.

    The issue has prompted concern on Capitol Hill that the Pentagon is increasingly deploying offensive cyber operations against adversaries—including against Iran last month during a peak in tensions with Tehran—without keeping congressional overseers adequately informed.

    A senior administration official said that “the administration keeps Congress appropriately informed of cyber operations, including by providing briefings and documents.” A spokesman for the U.S. Cyber Command declined to comment.

    In a bipartisan letter addressed to Mr. Trump in February, the leaders of the House Armed Services Committee said Congress hadn’t been able to see the directive, known as National Security Presidential Memorandum 13, “and other related documents on cyber operations” despite the panel’s requests. Lacking that visibility had impeded the committee’s ability to consider the policy implications of military cyber operations, the letter said.

    “The committee firmly believes it should be furnished with your recently signed classified memorandum and directives on cyber operations that outline how statutory authorities are being interpreted and employed,” lawmakers wrote in the letter, a copy of which was seen by The Wall Street Journal. The letter hasn’t previously been made public.

    The letter was signed by committee Chairman Adam Smith (D., Wash.) and the panel’s top Republican, Mac Thornberry of Texas, as well as Reps. Jim Langevin (D., R.I.) and Elise Stefanik (R., N.Y.), who lead the panel’s emerging-threats subcommittee.


    Trump, Seeking to Relax Rules on U.S. Cyberattacks, Reverses Obama Directive (Aug. 15, 2018)

    A spokeswoman for the House Armed Services Committee said the administration never responded to the letter, hasn’t allowed the panel to view the document and hasn’t provided any in-person briefings.

    The full House is expected to vote as soon as this week on an amendment to an annual defense authorization bill that would compel the administration to share Mr. Trump’s directive with Congress, the spokeswoman said.

    The Trump administration has ignored multiple requests for guidance and information, the spokeswoman said, adding: “To date, those requests have gone not only unfulfilled, but also unacknowledged by the administration.”

    It couldn’t be determined whether any other lawmakers in Congress had been allowed to view Mr. Trump’s memorandum, but aides on the House Armed Services Committee said they weren’t aware of any being granted access. A spokesman for the Senate Armed Services Committee didn’t respond to a request for comment.

    The Wall Street Journal first reported last year that Mr. Trump had rescinded the Obama-era rules, known as Presidential Policy Directive 20, and replaced them with new guidance intended to empower the Defense Department with more autonomy and flexibility when launching offensive cyber strikes.

    The move, though shrouded in secrecy, prompted general praise, even from Democrats in Congress and former Obama administration officials who conceded the previous process was overly bureaucratic and rarely yielded a worthwhile result.

    But security experts also cautioned that the new rules require appropriate oversight to minimize the risk of a U.S. cyberattack unintentionally escalating into a traditional military conflict.

    During the Obama administration, the National Security Council proactively briefed a few congressional committees and shared the language of the classified documents with lawmakers and staffers who had appropriate clearance, according to former officials.

    “The idea of simply ignoring the inquiry or failing to provide something for the Hill to see, that strikes me as pretty unusual,” said Josh Geltzer, a senior National Security Council official who served under both the Obama and Trump administrations.
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    Ari Schwartz, a senior White House cybersecurity official during the Obama administration, said the Obama administration actively briefed the Republican-led Congress about the Obama-era directive governing the use of military cyberattacks before being asked to do so. Briefings were also provided to privacy advocates, said Mr. Schwartz, now managing director of cybersecurity services at the law firm Venable, said

    Short bullet points explaining in broad terms portions of the Obama directive were available publicly, and its full contents were fully disclosed in leaks in 2013 by former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden.

    While the Trump administration hasn’t made any part of Mr. Trump’s memorandum public, national security adviser John Bolton last year confirmed that the new rules had been signed and has since spoken in general terms about how they have been used.

    The U.S. covertly launched offensive cyber operations against an Iranian intelligence group’s computer systems last month, the same day President Trump pulled back on using more traditional methods of military force, U.S. officials have said.

    The cyberattacks came during the peak of tensions between the two countries over a series of incidents across the Middle East, including Tehran’s downing of an American reconnaissance drone.

    Speaking last month at a Wall Street Journal event, Mr. Bolton suggested that U.S. cyberattacks would become more frequent.

    “We’re now opening the aperture, broadening the areas we’re prepared to act in,” Mr. Bolton said.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by 1911user View Post
    snip

    WASHINGTON—The Trump administration hasn’t allowed members of Congress to read a classified directive President Trump issued almost a year ago outlining new rules for the military’s use of cyber weapons, despite repeated requests, according to lawmakers and others familiar with the matter.
    Which is why they are still effective after a year.

    Once the demonrat traitors in congress get their hands on any information it will 'leaked' around the world.
    Matthew 13:49 So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, and shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mistaken1 View Post
    Which is why they are still effective after a year.

    Once the demonrat traitors in congress get their hands on any information it will 'leaked' around the world.
    How true this is....

    Texican....

  4. #4
    Isn't omar on a committe that would read them?

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    I'm going to bump this once for the late evening crowd.

    This quote is from the last of the article.

    Speaking last month at a Wall Street Journal event, Mr. Bolton suggested that U.S. cyberattacks would become more frequent.

    “We’re now opening the aperture, broadening the areas we’re prepared to act in,” Mr. Bolton said.

  6. #6
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    What's the phrase? Above your pay grade" rings a bell.

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