Trump asks why Obama admin didn't stop Russian Federation from meddling

"Secretary Johnson is utterly misinformed".

Later in the day, Russia's deputy foreign minister said he had cancelled talks that were scheduled for Friday with the US undersecretary of state.

"We do everything we can to protect that data", Dean said, before acknowledging that no system connected to the Internet is entirely hack-proof.

The Thursday report said it wasn't clear whether Russian Federation was involved in the specific case where a voter's information was altered. Its Senate counterpart raises the same issues with current Federal Bureau of Investigation, homeland security and state election officials.

It took until October for Johnson and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper to issue a public statement confronting Russian Federation.

Johnson was asked by Republican South Carolina Rep. Trey Gowdy whether he had seen evidence of collusion or coordination between Trump and associates and Russian Federation while he was still in office.

During the presidential campaign, Trump said he hoped Russian Federation would be able to uncover missing emails from Hillary Clinton.

In a Senate hearing this week, a senior official from the Department of Homeland Security said that 21 states had their voter databases breached by hackers during the 2016 election.

But he says the answer wasn't reassuring.

"The FBI and the DNC had been in contact with each other months before about the intrusion", he said.

Trump also blasted the Democratic National Committee, which was hacked and had its emails posted on WikiLeaks, turned down offers from DHS to help shore up its systems.

Johnson is testifying before the House intelligence committee.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has said, by the time he left in January, there was no evidence of collusion. That was Donald Trump, although Johnson didn't name him.

Rep. Michael Conaway (R-Texas) questioned why United States election systems remain vulnerable to these kind of attacks.

While the Russian interference in the 2016 campaign has been known for months, it was the first time US officials have said how many states' electoral systems were targeted. But Johnson didn't say that Wednesday.

As homeland security secretary, Johnson lacked access to much of the intelligence being gathered.

Dozens of state officials told NBC News they have received little direction from Washington about election security.

The federal and congressional probes into Russian interference during the election has not determined whether the infiltrators of the successfully altered database were working on behalf of the Russian government. "So we were concerned that by making the statement we might in and of itself be challenging the integrity of the election process itself".

US officials sought Wednesday to underscore for lawmakers the threat Russian Federation posed to the 2016 vote for the White House, outlining efforts to hack into election systems in 21 states and to fill the internet with misinformation during a divisive campaign season.

In a separate hearing, former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson told the House Intelligence Committee that he had seen no evidence during his tenure that Russian Federation had manipulated the vote during the 2016 election, Fox News reports.

Scott McConnell with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security referred questions about which states were subject to cyber-attacks to state officials.

"I mean, you go to the CEO of a company, and they probably deal with the head of I.T.", she added.

  • Leroy Wright