National Intelligence Thinks Putin is Plotting to Undermine Presidential Election
The Office of National Intelligence has begun an investigation into “how and to what extent” Vladimir Putin and/or Russia is attempting to influence the 2016 US elections.
According to former intelligence agents, “this is something of concern” for James Clapper, the director of National Intelligence. After the hack in the Democratic National Convention, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, state election computers in Arizona and Illinois, and the New York Times in a matter of a few months, there is cause for concern.
In all but two of these cases, Donald Trump had asked for Russia’s involvement in “hacking” into these institutions. And whether or not Trump has influence, there has been “an unprecedented intrusion” into our electoral process with the express purpose of disrupting “our political process”.
In a recent interview with Bloomberg, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that although he and his country had no involvement in these recent cybersecurity breaches, he considered the intrusion into the DNC as “a public service” because “it [doesn’t] even matter who hacked this data… the important thing is the content that was given to the public.’’
Regardless of what Putin admits to in public, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid asked the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) to investigate whether Russian intelligence was manipulating US electoral processes, including “the intent to falsify official election results”.
Part of the problem is how electronic US elections has become recent years, but the alt-right has taken this fact to an extreme by pushing the conspiracy theory that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) “is… preparing to take control of the US election.”
One of the biggest problems with this year’s election turns out to be Republican-run states that use an electronic voting machine without paper votes to back it up.
States such as:
• North Carolina
Because Republicans have chosen to use electronic voting machines, there is a major weak spot in this year’s elections. It means that a hacker could delete or alter information on voter rolls. Moreover, touch-screen voting booths like those used in swing states such as Pennsylvania, Florida, New Jersey, and Virginia have no paper record to “guard against fraud or manipulation”.
With the damage done to our voting process, and GOP governors leaving this year’s elections up for any hacker (Russian or otherwise) to hack into, the Illinois State Board of Elections “ mailed out to nearly 700 voters” who had their personal data stolen. Including private information such as “voter names, addresses, dates of birth, phone numbers, email addresses, driver’s license numbers, and the last four digits of social security numbers.”
Other states are preparing for the worst and opting for paper ballots which would safeguard against hackers because the paper trail would prove which candidate received the most votes. This makes sense because “old-fashioned… paper ballots can’t be altered by a few keystrokes.”
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