FBI chief: Foreign influence campaigns continually targeting US

FBI chief: Foreign influence campaigns continually targeting US
© Greg Nash

FBI Director Christopher Wray warned Tuesday that foreign nations are still engaging in disinformation campaigns on social media to stir an already tense political pot in the U.S.

Speaking at the RSA cybersecurity conference in San Francisco, Wray said that while no influence campaign had yet made a “material impact on election infrastructure,” the efforts on social media have continued “virtually unabated,” according to CNN

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Wray pointed to Russia, Iran, China and North Korea as waging broader cyber threats “unlike anything we have had in our lifetimes.”

“The thing that most shocked me was the breath and the depth and the scale of the Chinese counterintelligence threat,” he added, according to CNN.

Wray noted that the FBI has been aligning with social media companies to prevent influence campaigns from spreading online, saying the cooperation has been a “great example of how the government and private sector can work together in a common defense.”

Malicious digital activity from foreign governments and entities was thrust into the spotlight in 2016 after it was revealed that Russians waged a sophisticated social media campaign to spread false information and stoke tensions online over hot-button issues.