The United States will get hit again by Russian cyberattacks if the country doesn’t pay closer attention and work more closely with European allies who are also victims, international elections experts warned on Wednesday. In testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, experts described extensive Russian interference in European elections and encouraged more awareness among the American of how Russians are trying to undermine U.S. candidates and faith in government. One witness, a former U.S. ambassador to NATO, criticized both former President Barack Obama and current President Donald Trump for not doing more to publicize the problem and combat it.
“I do think that it’s time for Congress and not the president to lead the response to Russia’s cyberattack on the United States,” said Nicholas Burns, who worked as NATO ambassador and undersecretary at the State Department under President George W. Bush.
Burns criticized Obama for not doing more as it became apparent during last year’s election that Russia was trying to interfere. But he had harsher words for Trump, saying he hadn’t been skeptical enough of Russia’s role in the election. “If he continues to refuse to act, it’s a dereliction of his most basic duty to protect the country,” Burns said.