Leaked intelligence document claims to shine light on Russian hacking of US election
Insider threats, spies in the US and state-sponsored hackers in Russia all colluded to leak embarrassing emails from the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) servers ahead of the presidential election, it has been claimed.
The allegations are contained in a 35-page PDF leaked online overnight, which is said to be a series of intelligence briefings on US president-elect Donald Trump created between June and December 2016, which focus on his relationship with the Russian government. CNN claimed the report was commissioned by anti-Trump Republicans, and by Democrats later down the line.
Included within the dossier are several pages that, if true, shine further light on the DNC hack, including why WikiLeaks was involved and why the Kremlin would want to swing the election in Trump’s favour.
According to the document, a confidential informant codenamed Source E “acknowledged that the Russian regime had been behind the recent leak of e-mail messages, emanating from the [DNC] to the WikiLeaks platform. The reason for using WikiLeaks was ‘plausible deniability'”.
The document further alleges that “in the wider context of the TRUMP campaign/Kremlin co-operation, Source E claimed that the intelligence network being used against CLINTON comprised three elements. Firstly there were agents/facilitators within the Democratic Party itself; secondly Russian émigré and associated offensive cyber operators based in the US; and thirdly, state-sponsored cyber operatives working in Russia.”
According to the document, Russia hacked the DNC and leaked the emails in order to swing the presidential election in favour of Trump as Russian president Vladimir Putin both hated and feared Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton. The Kremlin was particularly hopeful that the content of the emails would influence young people who had supported Bernie Sanders to turn to the Republican candidate.
Russia, the report claimed, later became concerned, however, that the fallout of the hack was “spiralling out of control” following negative media attention and accusations of election interference against the Kremlin – a fear allegedly shared by some of those close to Trump.
Trump, his spokespeople and the Russian government have all denied knowledge of or involvement in the attack. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has also publicly denied the leaks came from the Kremlin.
Although we have read the document in full, we are unable to independently verify its authenticity. All personal details about Source E have been redacted from the document.