The Trump administration is blocking Congress from auditing a secret hacking policy it has already used for cyberattacks on Russia and Iran — stonewalling that lawmakers say raises the risks of a dangerous misfire that could make cyberspace less secure.
The policy, which loosened the reins on military strikes against U.S. adversaries, has been withheld for more than a year from lawmakers — even those who regularly review classified material. Lawmakers from both parties are concerned the Trump administration could plunge the country into a cyberwar without congressional approval or oversight, or at the very least, provoke retaliation that causes serious damage at home.
“Congress needs to understand what that guidance is so we can ensure we are properly understanding how far this goes and what the parameters are,” Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.), told me. “We need to…do our job and make sure the government is properly executing these authorities.”