The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) along with the FBI, as part of its investigation into Russian influence on the US election, has uncovered an e-mail link from the Kremlin to Trump Tower.
The unclassified 25 page summary report known as a “Joint Analysis Report” (JAR) released by the US intelligence community only confirmed what government officials suspected all along-that Russia had gained access to our government cyber system through the use of malware, trolling and fake websites linked by e-mails through proxy servers.
The United States is not the only country targeted by Russian cyber operatives. The USA Today reported that Ukraine, Bulgaria, Estonia, Germany, France and Austria have also fallen victim to hacking “aimed at influencing election results, sowing discord and undermining faith in public institutions that included government agencies, the media and elected officials.”
Although there was no identified link between the two leaders, Putin and Trump, there was evidence not officially disclosed that showed how Russian hackers through a campaign known as “Grizzly Steppe,” was able to infiltrate US Government agencies, including the Democratic National Committee (DNC)and Clinton advisor, John Podesta, at least as far back as 2014.
Attempts to infiltrate American cyber infrastructure have been a continuous threat under the direction of the Russian Federal Security Services (FSB) the successor to the KGB, once led by Vladimir Putin.
The KGB had previously undertaken efforts to infiltrate our election system going back to the Carter Administration in the 70’s.
Under code names such as “Advanced Persistent Threat” (APT 29) and its counterpart, APT 28, illegally obtained information such as account names, passwords and content that was passed on through the Russian based television network (RT) and then to Julian Assange and Wiki leaks.
The Obama Administration pointed out in October 2016 that not only the Russians but others are continually trying to hack into our systems and that it’s another constant threat that needs to be addressed.
The President Elect, of course, has criticized and expressed doubt of the department’s ability to identify and corroborate evidence of the Russian government’s efforts to take over our democratic election process.
He then changed his tune and admitted that although Russia, China and others continually try to gain access to our government records, activities and now it appears, our elections, he denies having sent or received any e-mails to or from the Russian leader.
Trump went on to say that the Republican National Committee (RNC) had previously reported hacking attempts but those were not successful because the RNC “had strong hacking defenses.”
“Thanks, I couldn’t have done it without you.”