National Security Agency Director Mike Rogers testified Tuesday that the United States gave French officials a “heads up” that Russian hackers would meddle in last weekend’s elections.
“We had become aware of Russian activity, we had talked to our French counterparts prior to the public announcements of the events that were publicly attributed this past weekend and gave them a heads up, ‘look, we’re watching the Russians, we’re seeing them penetrate some of your infrastructure, here’s what we’ve seen, what can we do to try to assist,'” Rogers told the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Rogers, who is also commander of U.S. Cyber Command, did not say when the warnings were issued.
On Friday, two days before the French election, hackers released 9 gigabytes of emails stolen from the political party of left-wing candidate Emmanuel Macron.
Russian president Vladimir Putin supported Macron’s opponent, Marine Le Pen. Cyber security experts said that the hack utilized techniques employed by Russian hackers who carried out cyber attacks during last year’s U.S. presidential campaign.
Despite the recent hack, Macron handily defeated Le Pen.
Rogers said Tuesday that the U.S. is working with other foreign nations to prevent future hacks.
“We’re doing similar things with our German counterparts, with our British counter parts, they have an upcoming election sequence. We’re trying to figure out how can we learn from each other,” Rogers said.