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Terrorism, Cyber Attacks Highlighted in James Clapper’s Testimony at Senate Committee Hearing

James Clapper
James Clapper

James Clapper, director of national intelligence, provided the Senate Armed Services Committee with a brief account of global threats to the U.S. during an SASC hearing Thursday.

Clapper, an inductee into the Wash100 for 2015, said in his written testimony that 2014 was the deadliest year for international terrorist activities on record over the past four and a half decades.

He told the committee approximately half of last year’s terrorism events occurred in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan and that the Islamic State organization carried out attacks more than any terror group during the first nine months of 2014.

During the hearing, Clapper also noted China, North Korea, Iran and Russia as the U.S.’ potential adversaries in cyber space.

“Cyber poses a very complex set of threats because profit-motivated criminals, ideologically motivated hackers or extremists, and variously capable nation-states… are all potential adversaries who, if they chose, can do great harm,” he told SASC.

According to Clapper, the year 2014 also saw a high rate of incidents caused by political instability and casualties due to state-sponsored mass killings around the world.

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