Such a statement is both rare and significant. Usually, senior cyber officials of one state rarely acknowledge acting against another state. But clearly, the Russian offensive in Ukraine is forcing new modes of communication.
Interviewed in Tallinn, Estonia, during the CyCon conference, Paul Nakasone, Director of the NSA and Commander of the U.S. Cyber Command, admitted that the United States has “conducted a range of operations across the spectrum; offensive, defensive, [and] information operations” in support of Ukraine in response to Russian cyberattacks.
He said that these activities (which he did not detail) were legal, carried out with full civilian oversight of the military and through decided policy at the U.S. Ministry of Defense.
Paul Nakasone said he worries “every day” about the risk of a Russian cyberattack targeting the United States and that his action was aimed at “protecting both America and its allies.” He also denied rumours minimising the importance of Russian cyberattacks since the beginning of the war.