ASPEN, Colo., July 28, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- 31 members of the Aspen Institute Homeland Security Group, a bipartisan group of homeland security and counterterrorism experts, have issued a statement on the recent Democratic National Committee hack:
Statement on the Democratic National Committee Hack July 28, 2016
We cannot ignore news reports that the IT servers of the Democratic National Committee have been hacked, with some experts attributing the attacks to hackers affiliated with the Russian Government. Other reports claim that documents stolen in these hacks have been released publicly at the instigation of the Russian Government, and there is widespread speculation that the release may be an effort to influence the outcome of the US presidential election.
The facts remain to be conclusively determined, but the investigation of these events should have the highest priority. If true, this is an attack not on one party but on the integrity of American democracy. And it may not be the end of such attacks. It is not unthinkable that those responsible will steal and release more files, and even salt the files they release with plausible forgeries.
This is unacceptable. Our president should be chosen by American citizens, not by foreign adversaries or interests.
This is not a partisan issue. All parties should agree that foreign efforts to influence our elections through hacking and stealing confidential records must be deterred and thwarted through a strong and unified response.
Future action is required:
The president should ensure that the attacks are attributed and take prompt actions sufficient to hold those responsible accountable and deter foreign actors from pursuing such tactics in the future.
Election officials at every level of government should take this lesson to heart: our electoral process could be a target for reckless foreign governments and terrorist groups. The voting process is critical to our democracy and must be proof against such attacks or the threat of such attacks. Voting processes and results must receive security akin to that we expect for critical infrastructure.
Political parties and the federal government bear special responsibility for helping to prevent such intrusions in the future. What they have done in the past is clearly insufficient and threatens public confidence in the political process. Just as the federal government offers, and candidates routinely accept, Secret Service protection for their candidates, so too should campaigns and candidates be offered and accept assistance in securing their communications.
Signees of the Statement by the Aspen Institute Homeland Security Group
Charles Allen Former Under Secretary of Intelligence and Analysis Department of Homeland Security
Stewart Baker Former Assistant Secretary for Policy Department of Homeland Security
Richard Ben-Veniste Former Commissioner National Commission on the Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States
Peter Bergen Director National Security Studies Program New America Foundation
William Bratton Commissioner New York City Police Department
Michael Chertoff Former Secretary of Homeland Security
Raj De Former General Counsel National Security Agency
Clark Ervin Former Inspector General Department of Homeland Security
Jane Harman President, Director and CEO The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
Michael Hayden Former Director National Security Agency; Central Intelligence Agency
David Heyman Former Assistant Secretary for Policy Department of Homeland Security
Brian Michael Jenkins Former Adviser National Commission on Terrorism
Juliette Kayyem Former Assistant Secretary for Intergovernmental Affairs Department of Homeland Security
John F. Kelly Former Commander US Southern Command
Michael Leiter Former Director National Counterterrorism Center
James Loy Former Acting Secretary of Homeland Security
Christian Marrone Former Chief of Staff Department of Homeland Security
Paul McHale Former Assistant Secretary for Homeland Defense Department of Defense
John McLaughlin Former Deputy and Acting Director Central Intelligence Agency
Jeanne Meserve Former Homeland Security Correspondent CNN News
Michael Morell Former Deputy Director Central Intelligence Agency
Matt Olsen Former Director National Counterterrorism Center
Eric Olson Former Commander US Special Operations Command
John Pistole Former Administrator Transportation Security Administration
Jessica Stern Fellow FXB Center for Health and Human Rights Harvard School of Public Health
Guy Swan Former Commanding General US Army North/Fifth Army
Frances Townsend Former Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism
Starnes Walker Former CTO & Technical Director US Fleet Cyber Command Former Director of Research Department of Homeland Security
William Webster Former Director Central Intelligence Agency; Federal Bureau of Investigation
Evan Wolff Partner Crowell & Moring LLP
Juan Zarate Former Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy National Security Advisor for Combating Terrorism