When Russian hackers accessed the email system for the Democrat National Committee, the immediate allegation from Democrats was that Vladimir Putin was attempting to interfere with American elections in order to help Donald Trump. Now, there is another huge case of hacking by the Russians against another perceived Trump enemy. This times, the victims of the hackers are reporters at the New York Times and other American news agencies.
The FBI firmly believes that Russia is behind this most recent hack targeting news organizations. In response to the allegations, the New York Times released the following statement via their spokeswoman, Eileen Murphy.
“Like most news organizations we are vigilant about guarding against attempts to hack into our systems. There are a variety of approaches we take up to and including working with outside investigators and law enforcement. We won’t comment on any specific attempt to gain unauthorized access to The Times.”
In addition to the targeting of news agencies in America, Washington, DC-based think tanks have also fallen victim to hackers.
US intelligence officials believe the picture emerging from the series of recent intrusions is that Russian spy agencies are using a wave of cyber attacks, including against think-tanks in Washington, to gather intelligence from a broad array of non-governmental organizations with windows into the US political system.
News organizations are considered top targets because they can yield valuable intelligence on reporter contacts in the government, as well as communications and unpublished works with sensitive information, US government officials believe.
Information accessed as a result of the Russian hack has not been disclosed. The New York Times and the FBI are working together to figure out how the hackers accessed the information and to assess damage done.