Thursday, December 15, 2016

Donald Trump's First 100 Days: Did Putin Direct Russian Hacking? And Other Big Questions

Why the fuss now? Who else has been hacked? Could the CIA be wrong?

What’s the latest?

Intelligence officials have leaked word to NBC and ABC that Russian President Vladimir Putin was “personally involved” in cyberattacks aimed at interfering with the United States presidential election. NBC’s report relies on “two senior officials with direct access to the information,” ABC’s on “U.S. and foreign intelligence officials.”

Didn’t we already know about Russia hacking the Democratic National Committee and others? Why all the fuss?

The newest reports purport to add detail on both actors and intent. Putin personally has not been previously blamed for hacks resulting in leaks damaging to the Clinton campaign, though in October Director of National Intelligence James Clapper stopped just short of doing so, saying that “based on the scope and sensitivity of these efforts ... only Russia’s senior-most officials could have authorized these activities.” Secondly, separate intelligence leaks to The New York Times and The Washington Post last week for the first time claimed that the intent of the hacking was to sway the election in favor of Trump, rather than simply sow generalized distrust. It has not yet been suggested that cyberattacks managed to change the actual vote tally in favor of either presidential candidate. Read More

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