President-elect alerts reporters on New Years Eve against being quick to pin blame on Moscow for the hacking of Democratic party emails
Donald Trump has expressed continued skepticism over whether Russia was responsible for computer hackers of Democratic party officials.
In remarks to reporters upon entering a New Years Eve gala at his Mar-a-Lago estate on Saturday night, Trump warned against being quick to pin the blame on Russia for the hacking of US emails.
I only want them to be sure, because its a pretty serious charge, he said.
And if you look at the weapons of weapons of mass destruction, that was a disaster, and they were wrong.
US intelligence officials have said that they are confident Russia was behind the US election hacks, which could have played a role in Trumps defeat over Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
On Thursday, Barack Obama announced tough measures against Moscow, including the expulsion of 35 diplomats and the closure of two compounds in the US. Russia chose not to respond in kind, inspiring Trump to tweet praise of President Vladimir Putin, whom he called very smart.
The Washington Post also reported on Friday that Moscow could be behind malware found on a laptop owned by a Vermont electricity utility.
In response to that discovery, Vermont governor Peter Shumlin said: One of the worlds resulting thugs, Vladimir Putin, has been attempting to hack our electric grid, which we rely upon to support our quality of life, economy, health, and safety.
At Mar-a-Lago, Trump said: I think its unfair if we dont know. It could be somebody else. I also know things that other people dont know so we cannot be sure.
And so I want them to be sure. I think its unfair if they dont know. And I know a great deal about hacking. And hacking is a very hard thing to demonstrate.
So it could be somebody else. And I also know things that other people dont know, and so they cannot be sure of the situation.
Asked what that information included, the president-elect said: You will find out on Tuesday or Wednesday. He did not elaborated, although in a statement released on Thursday in response to Obamas sanctions, he said he would fulfill intelligence officials.
Trump has long questioned the reporting of Russian attempts to influence the election in his prefer, telling hackers could have been perpetrated by China or lone hackers, and recurred a passion for the country to move on.
On Saturday, he went on to say no computer is safe from hacking and suggest that using a pen and paper was the most effective way of exchanging information.
If you have something really important, write it out and have it delivered by messenger, the old fashioned way, because Ill tell you what , no computer is safe, he said.
I have a boy whos 10 years old, he can do anything with a computer. You want something to genuinely go without detecting, write it out and have it sent by courier.