Declassified US intelligence reports points to Russian cyber campaign to sabotage US Presidential election
Russia carried out a comprehensive cyber campaign to sabotage the US presidential election, an operation that was ordered by Russian President Vladimir Putin and ultimately sought to help elect Donald Trump, according to US intelligence agencies, reported the Chicago Tribune.
The report released to the public is an abbreviated version of a highly classified multi-agency assessment requested by President Barack Obama, it said.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence said, that the report "'Assessing Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections' is a declassified version of a highly classified assessment that has been provided to the President [Barack Obama] and to recipients approved by the President."
Putin ordered a campaign of hacking and media manipulation aimed at undermining the presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton and boosting Donald Trump, media reported quoting the intelligence report.
The report said, "Russian efforts to influence the 2016 US presidential election represent the most recent expression of Moscow’s longstanding desire to undermine the US-led liberal democratic order, but these activities demonstrated a significant escalation in directness, level of activity, and scope of effort
compared to previous operations.
We assess Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election. Russia’s goals were to undermine public faith in the US democratic process, denigrate Secretary Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency. We further assess Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump. We have high confidence in these judgments.
We also assess Putin and the Russian Government aspired to help President-elect Trump’s election chances when possible by discrediting Secretary Clinton and publicly contrasting her unfavorably to him. All three agencies agree with this judgment. CIA and FBI have high confidence in this judgment; NSA has moderate confidence.
Moscow’s approach evolved over the course of the campaign based on Russia’s understanding of the electoral prospects of the two main candidates. When it appeared to Moscow that Secretary Clinton was likely to win the election, the Russian influence campaign began to focus more on undermining her future presidency.
Further information has come to light since Election Day that, when combined with Russian behavior since early November 2016, increases our confidence in our assessments of Russian motivations and goals."
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