INTELLIGENCE AGENCIES PROBE RUSSIAN 'COVERT OPERATION' TO CAUSE CHAOS DURING US ELECTION

US intelligence officials are investigating whether Vladimir Putin is trying to undermine the race for the White House.
It follows concern the Kremlin is planning a ‘covert operation’ ahead of the presidential election in a bid to reduce public trust.
The probe is looking into the extent of Russia’s suspected attack, which involves hacking political components that are vital to the vote in November.
Moscow’s intent may not be to impact the result, but could be to cause chaos and create propaganda damaging to the US.
US intelligence officials are investigating whether Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin are trying to undermine the race for the White House
US intelligence officials are investigating whether Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin are trying to undermine the race for the White House
Director of national intelligence James R. Clapper Jr is spearheading the investigation, the Washington Post, reported.
Charles Allen, a former  CIA officer, said: ‘This is something of concern for the DNI. It is being addressed.
There is no definitive proof of the attack, but officials are said to be looking at it ‘closely’. 
The FBI has already alerted local authorities to cyber threats targeting the election.
The latest reports of an cyber campaign by Kremlin came as President Obama and Putin continued their negotiations in a bid to strike a deal over Syria.
It also comes just weeks after the hack of Democratic National Committee emails, which officials say was carried out by Russia.
Beyond partisan embarrassment from those leaks, security risks to electronic voting machines have the potential to do even more damage. 
Compromised machines, producing faulty vote tallies, would raise questions about the very integrity of the political process.
‘Election administrators are trained to run elections, not defend computer systems,’ said Joe Hall, chief technologist for the Washington-based Center for Democracy and Technology. 
‘The voting systems we use in many cases don’t keep the kind of evidence one would need to detect an attack, let alone recover from it, without disruption or loss of votes.’
Donald Trump has already suggested trouble is ahead, saying in early August he’s ‘afraid the election is going to be rigged.’ He didn’t provide specific evidence. He asked volunteers on his website to sign up to be poll monitors in November.
The latest reports of an cyber campaign by Kremlin came as President Obama and Putin continued their negotiations in a bid to strike a deal over Syria
The latest reports of an cyber campaign by Kremlin came as President Obama and Putin continued their negotiations in a bid to strike a deal over Syria
Foreign state-sponsored hacking of the machines — or even voter-registration records — would also have practical implications, like delayed results or hiccups in allowing citizens to cast a ballot.
‘The biggest potential surprise in 2016 comes from the internet, and the potential for state-sponsored or hacker-instigated data dumps and turbulence that are disconnected from the campaigns,’ said Princeton historian Julian Zelizer.
Federal officials are becoming increasingly concerned about the possibility that hackers, particularly those working for Russia or another country, will make mischief.
Two U.S. cybersecurity firms have said their analysis of computer breaches at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee showed detailed evidence that the intrusions were probably linked to Russian hackers. 
The internet domains and registrants used in the breach of computers used by the committee tied back to a Russian hacking group linked to that nation’s intelligence services. 
That same hacking group, known as ‘Fancy Bear,’ was previously connected to the cyber breach at the Democratic National Committee.
Matthew Green, a Johns Hopkins cryptography expert, offered a simple solution to stave off ballot hacks: ‘There is only one way to protect the voting system from a nation-state-funded cyberattack,’ he wrote on Twitter. ‘Use paper.’ 

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