Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia

Putin directed election hacking


23 June 2017

Vladimir Putin was directly involved in hacking the 2016 election, the Washington Post reports, leading off an 8,000-word deep dive into what the U.S. intelligence community knew and what then-President Barack Obama tried to do about Russian efforts to “to disrupt and discredit the U.S. presidential race” and, in fact, to “defeat or at least damage the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, and help elect her opponent, Donald Trump.”

WaPo: “The White House debated various options to punish Russia, but facing obstacles and potential risks, it ultimately failed to exact a heavy toll on the Kremlin for its election interference.”

If you don’t want to read the whole thing, the Post lays out the main findings in a list, here.

Meanwhile, hacking of 2016’s state and local elections databases was more extensive than we thought. TIME reports that it included “at least one successful attempt to alter voter information, and the theft of thousands of voter records that contain private information like partial Social Security numbers.” Current and former officials tell TIME that a county voter database had been manipulated “but the alterations were discovered and rectified”; investigators don’t yet know whether the hackers were Russian agents. But the theft of nearly 90,000 Illinois voter records is being blamed on Russia. Now, “Congressional investigators are probing whether any of this stolen private information made its way to the Trump campaign.” Read, here.

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