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Russia ready for regular cybersecurity dialogue with US, says diplomat

Sergey Ryabkov noted that Moscow is documenting Washington’s desire to reduce these contacts to the issue of digital fraud

GENEVA, July 28. /TASS/. Moscow would like to maintain regular cybersecurity dialogue with Washington if there is a wide range of issues discussed, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told reporters on Wednesday.

"We would like to make it regular, if there is a broad agenda, and not just about attacks of some groups on a meat processing facility with the aim of getting a ransom for providing a key or removing a program," he said.

The deputy minister added that Moscow is documenting Washington’s desire to reduce these contacts to the issue of digital fraud.

Nevertheless, the diplomat pointed out that Russia is still trying to make it clear to Washington that Moscow is waiting for its colleagues’ reaction when it comes to different situations, namely when there are attempts to influence Russian structures and individuals from American jurisdictions. "We need a clear, substantive and professional reaction of the American side to our requests. Things are not so good here. This can’t be a one-way street," the deputy minister said. "But besides the need to establish a reciprocal approach and to use a reciprocal instrument in the form of the bilateral treaty on legal assistance dated 1999 and the protocols of information exchange approved during the presidency of [Barack] Obama - this is not a new issue - we are saying that we need to deal with the most difficult matters, such as attempts use the Internet and digital technologies to influence the arms control system and so on."

Ryabkov explained that this was not the same thing as strategic stability. "This comes down to attempts to influence drones, unmanned systems through internet technologies and some AI elements, out of the control of those managing these systems," he continued. "This isn’t strategic stability even. This is a multitude of issues related to security, methods of warfare and so on. This needs to be dealt with. But it’s hard to say so far whether the US will be ready for it. Although there has been some progress recently from the viewpoint of exchanging opinions."