President Joe Biden’s administration is still promising a speedy response to hacking attacks against the U.S. and private sector companies from Russia and possibly China, national security adviser Jake Sullivan said Friday.
The administration has known about the Russian SolarWinds hack for months, as it took place under President Donald Trump’s administration. White House press secretary Jen Psaki vowed a response to that hack in “weeks, not months,” Feb. 23. Now reports are surfacing of another hack against the Microsoft Exchange email service, this one allegedly of Chinese origin.
Sullivan told reporters at a White House press briefing Friday that the administration was still looking into the Microsoft hack and did not yet have enough information to start pointing fingers. He said the administration would not “hide the ball” for the culprit once enough information has been found, however. (RELATED: REPORT: Ally Of Jailed Putin Critic Flawlessly Plays Beethoven On Piano Amid Arrest By Russian Police)
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) March 12, 2021
The two hacks represent some of the most damaging intelligence failures in American history, with Russian groups gaining access do at least nine U.S. government agencies and roughly 100 fortune 500 companies.
Hacking response is becoming a major part of Biden’s relations with both China and Russia. His January call with Russian President Vladimir Putin focused heavily on the issue. Biden also held a virtual meeting Friday with the leaders of Australia, Japan and India to discuss both China and the two hacking attacks, among other topics.