President-elect Donald Trump should send a message to foreign powers attempting to hack into American organizations says transition team member Rep. Chris Collins, R-N.Y.
Though he admits that he thinks Russia was behind the cyber attacks on the Democratic National Committee, Collins denied that it affected the election
"I'm someone that has said all along," Collins said on CNN's "New Day." "I'll stipulate that it was Russia, but I continue to be disappointed in the subtext here that the Democrats are pushing that somehow any of this had anything to do with the results of the election.
"When we talk about cyber hacking, it's been going on for decades. Russia has been stealing our intellectual property. Others, rogue states have attempted to get into our electric grids."
Collins added that the U.S. can't simply accept that cyber attacks are unstoppable.
"We should continue to do whatever we can to dissuade these rogue actors, and it's really the four main countries of Russia, Iran, North Korea and China. They're all working in different areas trying to get into our cyber systems in different ways. We need to be constantly sending the message, especially to those four countries that we're just not going to stand by and let it happen. I'm not saying we should be announcing this on the front page of the paper, but this is an ongoing battle."
When asked if Trump will change his message to Russia after meeting with members of the intelligence community on Friday, Collins declined to speculate.
"I can't speak for what President-elect Trump will do or not do, other than I can assure you that between Gen. Flynn, the NSA and certainly others, Tom Bossert, Donald Trump is going to take a very strong stance on cyber hacking and I think what the other nations will find out from Donald Trump, he is actually going to take some steps to make sure that they discontinue this behavior, and especially China stealing our intellectual property."
Collins also wouldn't offer any examples of steps Trump could or will take against governments that attempt to steal American intellectual property.
"Oh, I can't tell you what they will do," he said. "We're able to cyber hack as well. And I think in some cases, we all know peace through strength works and at some point I suspect our capabilities are greater than those other four countries combined. There's ways to send a message but it's not something that the public is going to see on the front page of the paper, nor should they."
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