These measures may be directed against Russian officials and some oligarchs.
The US cyber command is developing information operations tactics that could be used against high-ranking Russian officials and oligarchs if Moscow tries to interfere in the US election in 2020.
The Washington Post, citing current and former American officials, reported this.
One of the possible scenarios is directed against the top management and representatives of the Russian elite. However, according to sources who spoke on the condition of anonymity, it probably will not affect Russian President Vladimir Putin personally.
The idea is to show that the sensitive personal data of the target of a cyberattack may be at risk if the interference does not stop, the Washington Post reports, noting that the sources declined to give more explanations that are detailed.
Cyber Command and Pentagon officials declined to comment.
The message came amid efforts by numerous departments of the Donald Trump administration to protect the 2020 election from foreign influence, although Trump himself questioned the conclusions of the American intelligence community about Russian interference in 2016.
The options under consideration are based on a Cyber command operation conducted before the midterm Congressional elections last year, the Washington Post writes. At the time, the command used email, pop-up and text messages addressed to Russian Internet trolls who spread misinformation on American social networks, as well as hackers working for Russian military intelligence. Thus, they were given to understand that their identification data is known and can be published.
Now the targets of retaliatory actions may be key leaders of the security services, the armed forces and, perhaps, some oligarchs. In this case, the distribution of messages may be accompanied by a limited cyber operation, which is designed to show the ability of the American side to gain access to a specific system or account, the sources said. The messages should implicitly warn the target that if election interference doesn’t stop, there will be consequences, the Washington Post points out.