My Fellow Americans,
Having met with Members of our National Security Council this past week to better understand the cyber security risks we face in our upcoming elections, I have instructed Secretaries Nielsen, Pompeo, and Mattis to coordinate on a three-step initiative to ensure the integrity of our Democracy against cyber threats from malicious nation-state actors. Specifically, I’ve instructed that the following actions be taken immediately:
1) Appoint and hire fifty experts from industry, academia, and government to work full-time coordinating election security in their assigned state, and to participate in a new Presidential Commission on Election Cyber Security, to be chaired by former Federal Chief Information Security Officer (CISO), Gregory Touhill, who will oversee expert selection.
2) Task the DHS National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC) to immediately establish a 24/7 war room in Washington DC to ingest, collect, and fuse relevant telemetry, data, and intelligence from each state for correlation, analysis, and response. Former Cybersecurity Coordinator Rob Joyce will lead this operational function.
3) Initiate a frank, face-to-face dialogue with military leadership in Russia to warn that any evidence of US election tampering will be cause for serious response from the United States. General Keith Alexander, former Commander of Cyber Command and Director of NSA, and recognized cyber security expert, will deliver this message in person on my behalf.
Each of these moves to protect our elections shall complement existing work in the states, as well as within the Department of Homeland Security, the State Department, and the Department of Defense. The initiatives led by Greg Touhill, Rob Joyce, and Keith Alexander shall be closely coordinated with each of the fifty states, as well as each Federal Department.
Protection of infrastructure is one aspect of our lives as Americans that is bipartisan. As such, I will ensure that these initiatives serve all Americans of all political affiliations. The cyber threats we’ve seen, and that we anticipate, target all of us. And as your President, it is my responsibility to protect our Democracy from these vicious attacks on our way of life.
President Donald Trump