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NBC: Unnamed U.S. Officials Say Putin Personally Involved in Hack of U.S. Election

HeadlineDec 15, 2016

According to NBC, unnamed U.S. intelligence officials say Russian President Vladimir Putin was personally involved in the effort to meddle in the 2016 U.S. presidential election to help Donald Trump win. The CIA has accused Russia of intervening, and President Obama has ordered a review of Russia’s role. President-elect Donald Trump has called the claims “ridiculous.” This comes as a New York Times investigation has revealed the Federal Bureau of Investigation was aware a DNC computer had been hacked as early as September 2015, allegedly by a team known as “The Dukes,” which the FBI says is linked to the Russian government. The Times investigation goes on to report an FBI agent called the DNC repeatedly to inform them of the security breach, but that the party’s tech-support contractor did almost nothing with the information, believing it might simply be a prank call. The Times also reports the hackers used a relatively low-tech means of infiltrating the emails of top targets, including Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairperson, John Podesta, whose emails were successfully hacked and then leaked over the summer, generating a slew of negative coverage of the Clinton campaign. The tactic is known as phishing—sending an email to a user asking them to change their password or click on a link in order to gain access to their entire account. John Podesta in fact did change his password after receiving one of these phishing emails, after being advised to do so by one of his aides.

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