The US military’s cyber unit was developing information warfare tactics that could be deployed against senior Russian officials if Moscow tried to interfere in the 2020 American presidential election, a media report said.
Citing current and former US officials, The Washington Post report said on Wednesday that the US Cyber Command will attack the personal data of Russian senior leadership and elites if the interference does not stop, reports Xinhua news agency reported.
The possible targets will not include Russian President Vladimir Putin, said the officials, adding that it would be considered too provocative.
The Cyber Command and officials at the Pentagon, however, have not officially made any statement on the development.
The move comes as various agencies within President Donald Trump’s administration were already making efforts to ensure that the 2020 presidential election was shielded against any foreign meddling.
Defence Secretary Mark Esper told reporters last week that the Pentagon participates in a whole-of-government approach through US Cyber Command and others to protect the 2020 elections.
Washington has imposed a series of sanctions against Russian individuals and entities, accusing them of meddling in US elections, which Moscow consistently denied.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov reiterated earlier this month in Washington that all speculations about alleged Russian interference in American domestic processes were baseless.