Ex-cyber official Chris Krebs opens up after Trump fired him

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Former US cybersecurity official Chris Krebs has given his first on-record interview since being fired by President Trump for calling the Nov. 3 election the “most secure” in US history.

CBS program “60 Minutes” on Friday released a portion of the interview with Krebs, the former director of the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.

“I don’t know if I was necessarily surprised. It’s not how I wanted to go out,” Krebs told journalist Scott Pelley in the interview, which will air in full Sunday night.

“The thing that upsets me the most about that is I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye to my team. And I’d worked with them for three and a half years in the trenches, building an agency, putting CISA on the national stage. And I loved that team. And I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye, so that’s what I’m most upset about.”

Asked about the claim the election was the “most secure,” Krebs said, “I stand by that.”

Krebs led CISA since 2017 and this year launched a “Rumor Control” website to debunk claims of voter fraud. A CISA panel declared that the “November 3rd election was the most secure in American history,” rejecting Trump’s claims of widespread fraud.

Krebs, a former Microsoft executive, told associates the week before his termination that he expected to be fired, according to reports. Trump allies believed he wanted to get fired to improve his future career prospects.

“Krebs is trying to make himself a resistance hero, obviously,” a senior administration official told The Post before Trump fired him on Nov. 17.

Chris Krebs
Chris KrebsCQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Krebs’ fate was subject to bureaucratic disagreement. Sources told The Post that Department of Homeland Security acting Secretary Chad Wolf sought to prevent the firing, but Trump ultimately tweeted that Krebs was dismissed “effective immediately.”

The president wrote in his termination tweet: “The recent statement by Chris Krebs on the security of the 2020 Election was highly inaccurate, in that there were massive improprieties and fraud – including dead people voting, Poll Watchers not allowed into polling locations, ‘glitches’ in the voting machines which changed votes from Trump to Biden, late voting, and many more. Therefore, effective immediately, Chris Krebs has been terminated as Director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.”

Among Krebs’ sins, according to detractors, was his decision to host an election night gathering in northern Virginia that was attended by two staffers of Dominion Voting Systems, whose platform miscounted some Michigan votes. Trump loyalists also noted that Krebs employed an appointee of President Barack Obama, Matt Masterson, as his senior adviser for election security, and claimed he was friendly with “Anonymous” author Miles Taylor.