Russia Is Still Pushing the Idea of a Joint Cybersecurity Group With the U.S.

Guys, just to be clear, didn’t we all agree this was a bad idea?

The joint cybersecurity working unit that President Trump proposed with Russia after a private meeting with Vladimir Putin, at the G20 summit immediately set off alarms with U.S. lawmakers, and pretty much everybody else. It was unanimously deemed the worst of many very bad ideas expressed by the president in his short time as Negotiator-in-Chief.

Dude, you and your team are already under heavy scrutiny because of Russian interference in a U.S. election. Don’t be so blatant.

A Russian official is saying that cybersecurity group is still in the works.

Andrey Krutskikh, a top adviser to Russian President Vladimir Putin on information security, was cited in Moscow’s RIA news agency on Thursday as saying that talks on the joint group were ongoing.

Really? Who is talking about this?

No, seriously. The words “Russia” and “cybersecurity,” at least on the national level, should never be used in the same sentence to express a positive.

An official from the White House, however, is putting a different spin on keeping the doors for joint cybersecurity efforts with Russia open.

“What was broached at that [Group of 20] conversation, as I understand it, was an opportunity to continue a dialogue — one that had in the past existed between the two countries, and I think one that we could pursue in the future with the appropriate reservations and the appropriate expectations, that we at least start with what is acceptable behavior in cyberspace and what norms and expectations that we’ll have moving forward,” White House homeland security adviser Tom Bossert told reporters aboard Air Force One on Friday.

That’s a 30-second conversation. We don’t need ongoing “talks” and joint units for that.

Here’s how it goes:

U.S. – “Don’t hack into the emails of our elected officials or meddle into any of our elections. Furthermore, don’t share hacked materials, should you ‘somehow’ come into possession of them, with sites like WikiLeaks.”

Russia – “But we didn’t.”

U.S. – “So you say. Just make sure you don’t and it’ll go a long way towards keeping things civil. Agreed?”

Russia – “Ok.”

End of conversation.

The entire U.S. intelligence community are in agreement that Russia actively sought to influence the 2016 election, turning it in favor of Trump, who is seen as more malleable, due to his inexperience in politics.

His openly expressed man-crush on Vladimir Putin didn’t help.

Talks of working with Russia on just about anything, right now, only serves to heighten suspicion of Trump or his team’s involvement with the Kremlin.