Establishing a joint Russia-US cybersecurity body is not a very good idea, according to the NSA Director. Discussions, though, are in progress, according to a top Russian official.
“I’m not a policy guy here. I would argue now is probably not the best time to be doing this,” National Security Agency Director (NSA) Mike Rogers told the annual Aspen Security Forum Saturday according to Reuters.
The idea of creating a joint Russia-US cyber security body was broached during the very first face-to-face meeting between Presidents Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany on July 7.
“The US president and I agreed that we’ll create a working group and work together on how to jointly monitor security in cyberspace,” Putin told journalists after the meeting.
Trump tweeted several days after the meeting that he and Putin had discussed forming an “impenetrable cybersecurity unit”.
The initiative, however, was greeted with a fierce backlash from both Republicans and Democrats, with the latter even filing amendments calling to block funding, including from the defense budget in order to thwart any possible cybersecurity agreement between Trump and Putin.
Donald Trump has since seemingly backed away from the idea.
“The fact that President Putin and I discussed a Cyber Security unit doesn’t mean I think it can happen. It can’t,” he tweeted.
The fact that President Putin and I discussed a Cyber Security unit doesn’t mean I think it can happen. It can’t-but a ceasefire can,& did!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 10 июля 2017 г.
Nevertheless, negotiations on the joint cybersecurity body are moving on, as Russian presidential envoy on the matter Andrey Krutskikh said earlier this week.
“There’s no need for ado about [President] Trump, the negotiations are ongoing… Various propositions are being introduced and studied, nobody steers away from the realization that negotiations and contacts are crucial,” Krutskikh told reporters on Thursday.