Washington(CNN)Military cyber officials are developing information warfare tactics that could be deployed against Russian oligarchs and officials if the country attempts to interfere in the 2020 US presidential election, current and former US officials told The Washington Post. The officials told The Post that one option being looked at by US Cyber Command would target senior Russian leadership and elites in an effort to show that their personal data could be hit if election interference did not stop. The option would not take aim at Russian President Vladimir Putin because that would be considered too provocative, the officials said, according to the Post.
Another option involves a disinformation campaign designed to exploit contention within the Russian government as well as operations that would expose malicious behavior, the newspaper reported.
Elissa Smith, a spokeswoman for the Department of Defense, told CNN in a statement that the department doesn’t comment on “cyberspace operations, planning or intelligence,” but she did say the Defense Department and US Cyber Command were “generating insights for the US government to provide” to state and local governments.