Obama Acknowledges U.S. ‘Plays Offense’ on Foreign Hacking

TIME

President Obama acknowledged that the United States “plays offense” against other countries online, arguing that the lines between defensive and aggressive actions are blurred in the world of cybersecurity.

In an interview with the tech news website Re/Code during a visit to Silicon Valley, Obama compared online security to basketball, describing a fluid situation where America routinely switches between offensive and defensive actions.

“This is more like basketball than football in the sense that there’s no clear line between offense and defense,” he said. “Things are going back and forth all the time.”

MORE:Obama Calls on Silicon Valley to Help Thwart Cyberattacks

He also argued that the technology goes both ways “because when you develop sufficient defenses, the same sophistication you have for defense means that potentially you can engage in offense.”

The remarks come after cyberattacks last year aimed at Sony over the planned release of the comedy

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