Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., said he plans to make increased cybersecurity enforcement in Ukraine a condition for a package of aid and protections meant as a response to Russia's takeover of Crimea.
Warner is seeking to attach an amendment to a Senate bill, headed for a procedural vote Monday night, which will make loan guarantees to Ukraine and may include supplies and other aid meant to shore up its defense capabilities.
Warner said Ukraine needed to be held responsible for combating cybercrime after the security breach at Target in November and December, which saw the personal information of as many as 100 million customers stolen and was traced to Ukraine.
“The previous Ukrainian regime under president [Viktor] Yanukovych basically turned a blind eye to the number of cyber-activists there,” the Virginia Democrat said on MSNBC. “And I think many of us remember the Target breach that took place right before Christmas, that was perpetrated by cyber-criminals out of Ukraine. If we’re going to help Ukraine, Ukraine needs to step up and work with our law enforcement officials to go after these cyber-criminals.”
Other Senators are also planning to float amendments to the package, including Wyoming Republican John Barrasso, to expedite natural gas exports to the region.
While both the Senate and House are eager to pass legislation, they may run into a roadblock over whether to include funding from the International Monetary Fund.