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>> Senior US intelligence officials on Capitol Hill Thursday, testifying that Russia's cyber capabilities pose a major threat to US interest.>> Russia has clearly assumed an even more aggressive cyber posture by increasing cyber espionage operations leaking data stolen from these operations and targeting critical infrastructure systems.>> The hearings come a day before President-elect Donald Trump is due to be briefed on the hacks that targeted the Democratic Party.
But Trump is still skeptical about the findings that Moscow carried out cyber attacks during the 2016 election to steal campaign information, erode faith in US institutions and spread fake news and propaganda. Trump has openly mocked the intelligence community on the issue, praising Vladimir Putin over Obama, and even citing Julian Assange in tweets to support his claims of doubt.
>> The name, Mr. Assange, has popped up, and do you think there's any credibility we should attach to this individual given his record of->> Not in my view.>> Not in your view.>> Trump and top advisers believe Democrats are trying to de-legitimize his election victory by accusing Russian authorities of helping him win.
But his skepticism puts him at odds, not only with the CIA, FBI, and NSA, but also leaders in both parties. The hearings come a week after President Obama ordered the expulsion of 35 suspected Russian spies and imposed sanctions on two Russian intelligence agencies. Senator McCain stating this wasn't nearly enough.
>> Unless we demonstrate that the costs of attacking the United States outweigh the perceived benefits, these cyber attacks will only grow.>> Intelligence officials plan to brief Congress and release an unclassified version of their findings to the public early next week.