The Russia Hack and the Challenge to American Democracy: David Sanger, Chief Washington Correspondent, The New York Times

Special Event | November 1 | 4-5:30 p.m. | Sutardja Dai Hall, Banatao Auditorium

 David Sanger, New York Times

 Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity (CLTC)

As part of our Fall 2017 Seminar Series, the UC Berkeley Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity is honored to welcome David Sanger, a Pulitzer Prize-winning national security correspondent for The New York Times and one of the newspaper’s senior writers. Please RSVP here to attend this event, which will be held on November 1, 4pm, in Banatao Auditorium on the UC Berkeley campus (map).

Mr. Sanger will present on "The Russia Hack and the Challenge to American Democracy," drawing upon his experience as one of the nation's premier political reporters. His presentation will reflect the theme of this semester's CLTC seminars, "Cybersecurity and Democracy: The Shifting Implications of Citizenship in the Digital Age.” A reception will follow the presentation.

The Russia Hack and the Challenge to American Democracy
When the F.B.I. called the Democratic National Committee in early fall 2015 and said they suspected a foreign state was inside the D.N.C.'s computers, few paid attention or thought it was anything out of the ordinary. Two years later, we regard it as a defining moment in the use of cyber as a weapon of influence, just as Stuxnet was a defining moment in the use of cyber as a source of destruction. David E. Sanger, national security correspondent for the New York Times and a member of the team that won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting for his work on how the Russia hack unfolded, takes on both the remarkable story of the operation and its implications. Suddenly we are asking what will be vulnerable next time, and whether we are about to enter a sea change in how nations compete in the cyber realm. He looks both backward and forward, asking why the United States was so unprepared—and whether political speech on social media may soon be regulated. And, as the correspondent who told the world the story of "Olympic Games,'' the American code name for the Stuxnet attacks, he asks whether governments have begun to understand how cyber power will affect the underpinnings of democracy.

About the Speaker
David E. Sanger is National Security Correspondent for The New York Times and one of the newspaper’s senior writers. With a team of his Times colleagues, he was the winner of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize in International Reporting, the third in Mr. Sanger’s 35-year career at the Times.

He is also the author of two Times bestsellers on foreign policy and national security: The Inheritance: The World Obama Confronts and the Challenges to American Power (2009) and Confront and Conceal: Obama’s Secret Wars and Surprising Use of American Power (2012). He served as the Times’ Tokyo Bureau Chief, Washington Economic Correspondent, White House correspondent during the Clinton and Bush Administrations and Chief Washington Correspondent.

Mr. Sanger spent six years in Tokyo, writing about the emergence of Japan as a major American competitor, and then the country’s humbling recession. He wrote many of the first articles about North Korea’s emerging nuclear weapons program. Returning to Washington, Mr. Sanger turned to a wide range of diplomatic and national security issues, and especially issues of nuclear proliferation and the rise of cyber conflict among nations. In stories in the Times and in Confront and Conceal, he revealed the story of Olympic Games, the code name for the most sophisticated cyber attack in history, the American-Israeli effort to sabotage Iran’s nuclear program with the Stuxnet worm. His journalistic pursuit of the origins of Stuxnet became the subject of a major documentary, Zero Days, which made the shortlist for the Academy Award best documentary for 2016. With his Times colleague Bill Broad, he also described, in early 2017, a parallel cyber effort against North Korea.

Mr. Sanger was a leading member of the team that investigated the causes of the Challenger disaster in 1986, which was awarded a Pulitzer in national reporting the following year. A second Pulitzer, in 1999, was awarded to a team that investigated the struggles within the Clinton administration over controlling technology exports to China. He has also won the Weintal Prize for diplomatic reporting for his coverage of the Iraq and Korea crises, the Aldo Beckman prize for coverage of the Presidency, and, in two separate years, the Merriman Smith Memorial Award, for coverage of national security issues. “Nuclear Jihad,” the documentary that Mr. Sanger reported for Discovery/Times Television, won the DuPont Award for its explanation of the workings of the A.Q. Khan nuclear proliferation network. That coverage was also a finalist for the Pulitzer.

A 1982 graduate of Harvard College, Mr. Sanger was the first senior fellow in The Press and National Security at the Harvard’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. With Graham Allison, he co-teaches “Central Challenges in American National Security, Strategy and the Press” at the Kennedy School of Government.

About the CLTC Seminar Series
The overarching theme of this semester’s seminar series is “Cybersecurity and Democracy: The Shifting Implications of Citizenship in the Digital Age.” In the year since ODNI and DHS first announced that Russian intelligence hacked the Democratic National Committee, we have become increasingly cognizant of the many ways our reliance on technology can wield outsized influence on our democracy. Whether we are thinking about how Russian hacks influenced the outcome of the 2016 Presidential Election, the vulnerability of electronic voting machines, or whether social media echo chambers encourage biased news consumption, it is clear that cybersecurity is a national security concern.

In addition to David Sanger, our speakers for this series have included Sean Zadig, Director, Oath (Yahoo) Threat Investigations and David Dill, Professor, Department of Computer Science at Stanford University. We will welcome Camille Francois, Principal Researcher for Jigsaw, on 11/16 at 12pm. Learn more and RSVP for future events here.

 All Audiences

 All Audiences

  RSVP online by October 30

 A reception will follow the event.