The DNC, the DNCC, even the NSA – there has been a surge of hacking over the past month, much of it blamed on Russia, yet the two perhaps most famous servers, Hillary’s personal email server, and that of the Clinton Family Foundation, had somehow emerged unscathed. Or maybe not: according to Reuters, the Clintons’ Charitable Foundation (which as we learned last week was the recipient of 96% of the Clintons’ own donations) hired prominent security firm FireEye to examine the data systems “after seeing indications they might have been hacked.”
While so far no message or document hacked from the New York-based Clinton Foundation has surfaced in public, this may change very soon. Recall how meticulously the ground was set for the Soros hack just days before DCLeaks revealed a treasure trove of Open Society Foundation documents. Today’s Reuters report may server the same function.
One of the sources and two U.S. security officials said that like hackers who targeted the Democratic National Committee, Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and the Democrats’ congressional fundraising committee, the hackers appear to have used “spear phishing” techniques to gain access to the foundation’s network. These techniques include creating bogus emails or websites in an effort to gain access to Clinton Foundation staffers’ emails and then to the foundation itself.
And, once again, Russia is being set as the “hacker” scapegoat. Reuters cites U.S. officials who said “the hackers used the same techniques Russian intelligence agencies or their proxies employed against the Democratic Party groups, which suggests that Russians also attacked the foundation.” Ironically, the NSA insider who spoke to motherboard explicitly did so, to warn the world about the dangers of blaming every new hack on the Kremlin, especially since there is so far no actual confirmation Putin is behind these acts.
Kremlin officials dismissed as absurd the allegations of Moscow’s involvement, which were made last month amid political party nominating conventions for the Nov. 8 election.
Neither former White House Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler, the Clinton Foundation’s principal lawyer, nor a spokeswoman for the foundation responded to requests for comment on the hacking and the precautions the organization has taken.
Officials with FireEye said the company could not discuss its clients.
So in case this is indeed just a preview of what is to come, what data is about to be released?
As Reuters notes, “although no documents have emerged, the attacks have left some Democrats and Clinton campaign officials worried that the hackers might have obtained emails and voice messages that could be used to reinforce Republican charges that donors to the Clinton Foundation were rewarded with access to Clinton and her aides while she was secretary of state or to her husband, former President Bill Clinton.”
In other words, the hack will confirm what most have already known: the foundation granted favors in exchange for “speaking fees.”
And another concern: hackers or outlets such as the anti-secrecy WikiLeaks website could release documents and emails damaging to her presidential campaign, several people familiar with the foundation’s activities said.
Since the “people familiar” know precisely what will be released, it appears that Trump may be about to get another much needed polling boost, thanks to “Russian” hacker.
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