Feb 2, 2022 - Axios Events

Rep. Langevin: Russia could respond to sanctions with cyberattacks

Jim Langevin and Margaret Talev

Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) at an Axios event. Screenshot: Axios

Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) told Axios event on Wednesday that the U.S. should "be ready" in case Russia counteracts sanctions imposed on it with cyberattacks.

Driving the news: Russia continues to move closer to war with Ukraine — between 100,000 and 130,000 Russian troops are now stationed at the Ukrainian border. Biden administration officials have threatened to cut Russia off from its supply of semiconductors if it invades its neighbor.

Context: A day after talks failed to ease tensions between the U.S., Europe and Russia, a cyberattack knocked off a large portion of Ukrainian government websites.

Details: "We have to be ready that if we impose sanctions, that there is blowback here and that Russia could potentially respond through cyber means over here as well," Langevin said, adding that the U.S. is capable of responding if that does happen.

  • Langevin said he expressed his concerns with the Pentagon and others in government.

"We should be able to be ready to respond to bad actors, whether it's Russia or anyone else, when they violate cyber norms and create an unstable cyber environment," Langevin said.

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