President-elect Donald Trump met with intelligence community leaders on Friday and concluded that foreign hacking had “absolutely no effect on the outcome of the election.”
In a statement he issued after the meeting, Trump also managed to slip in a jab at the Democrat National Committee’s cybersecurity, adding, “the RNC had strong hacking defenses.”
“While Russia, China, other countries, outside groups and people are consistently trying to break through the cyber infrastructure of our governmental institutions, businesses and organizations including the Democrat National Committee, there was absolutely no effect on the outcome of the election including the fact that there was no tampering whatsoever with voting machines,” said Trump.
The intelligence community has not claimed that voting machines were hacked. Instead, officials have noted that cyberattcks were used to leak stolen emails that could influence the opinion of voters prior to the election. The leaked emails typically portrayed the Hillary Clinton campaign in a negative light.
“There were attempts to hack the Republican National Committee, but the RNC had strong hacking defenses and the hackers were unsuccessful,” Trump said.
The president-elect, who is scheduled to take office on Jan. 20, outlined a plan to fight future attacks.
“Whether it is our government, organizations, associations or businesses we need to aggressively combat and stop cyberattacks,” Trump said in the statement. “I will appoint a team to give me a plan within 90 days of taking office. The methods, tools and tactics we use to keep America safe should not be a public discussion that will benefit those who seek to do us harm. Two weeks from today I will take the oath of office and America’s safety and security will be my number one priority.”