Joint Base Andrews

Prince George’s County, Maryland

3:15 P.M. EDT

     Q    Mr. President, does it make sense to attack the servers that are used in Russia to carry out —

     THE PRESIDENT:  (Inaudible.)

Q    Does it make sense to attack the servers that are used to carry out these ransom attacks in Russia?

     THE PRESIDENT:  To attack them?

     Q    Well —

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, what happened was there was one company that got — I mean, they weren’t specifically attacking servers; they were attacking businesses.

     Q    I mean the U.S. response.  Up until now, the U.S. response has been to exercise sanctions — impose sanctions on Russia for this malign activity.  Does it make sense for the U.S. to take it up a notch and attack the actual servers that are used?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Yes.

     Q    Sir, what are the consequences for Putin if he does not step up against cyberattacks?

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, we set up a committee — joint committee.  They’re meeting on, I think, the 16th.  And I believe we’re going to get some cooperation.

     Thank you.

     Q    Mr. President, what do you expect President Putin (inaudible) — what do you expect him to do?  What are those actions?

     THE PRESIDENT:  It’s not appropriate for me to say what I expect him to do now.  But we’ll see. 

     Thank you.

  3:17 P.M. EDT

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