Is Russia responsible for the DNC email hack?

American cyber-security experts strongly believe that Russia's fingerprints are all over the hack job that exposed more than 20,000 emails from the Democratic National Committee.

The creator of the website Wikileaks that published the emails, Julian Assange, denies Russian involvement.  But it's the question of why Vladimor Putin would seek to influence the U.S. election that has become controversial.

The White House says Putin hacked the DNC to elect Donald Trump president.  There is zero evidence for that it's pure speculation.  But by inference, Democrats are accusing Trump of the crime, desperately looking for a way to deflect attention from the corruption and hypocrisy discovered in the emails.

The Hill:

“I think we are probably in full-scale, ‘Yes, this is Russia trying to influence the election so they can have the person they prefer at the top of the American government,’” said Jason Healey, a director at the Atlantic Council who has worked on cyber defenses at the White House.

The leak of the DNC emails last week was a bombshell, providing clear evidence that officials in the committee were actively working against the campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). 

The controversy has marred the start of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia and forced the DNC chairwoman, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla.), to resign.

From the beginning, there has been little doubt that the breach of the committee's systems — exposed in June — was the work of Russian intelligence. Multiple security firms have conducted a forensic analysis of the committee’s systems and found strong evidence pointing to a pair of well-known groups affiliated with the Kremlin.

At the time, the breach looked like traditional intelligence gathering. Political committees are a high-value target for any government seeking to predict the outcome of a national election, experts say.

Some security experts then posited that the hack could be a bid by the Russians to influence the election in some way, but the underlying evidence was too tenuous to make a strong case.

But the timing of Friday’s email dump — on the eve of the Philadelphia convention — changed that assessment for many. Experts say they no longer have any doubt that Russia is trying to influence the outcome of November’s contest.

“The timing, the way this is being done, makes it obvious that this is an attempt to damage the Democratic presidential campaign,” said Scott Borg, director of the nonprofit research institute U.S. Cyber Consequences Unit.

The FBI on Monday said it has opened an investigation into the DNC hack “to determine the nature and scope of the matter."

“A compromise of this nature is something we take very seriously, and the FBI will continue to investigate and hold accountable those who pose a threat in cyberspace,” the FBI said in a statement.

This is an example of taking an outcome the release of emails before the DNC and using it as "evidence."  It is suggestive nothing more.  Beyond that, those who think Putin is trying to get Trump elected have to come up with a reason why he would want Trump instead of Clinton to deal with.

The mutual admiration society is one thing.  Trump also admired Saddam Hussein and has said nice things about North Korean leader Kim.  That certainly doesn't mean Kim cares whether Trump is elected or not.

Putin may like Trump, but does he really want an "America First" president to negotiate with?  There's scant evidence of that.  Trump might bend in some areas of mutual concern, but he would take a stand in others. 

As far as Hillary Clinton is concerned, she is a well known quantity with the Russian government a predictability any nation craves.  Put simply, there is no discernible advantage for Putin to favor one candidate over the other.

That said, Putin likes stirring the pot.  If they are responsible for the hack, this could be nothing more than Putin reminding the American government of what he's capable of. 

American cyber-security experts strongly believe that Russia's fingerprints are all over the hack job that exposed more than 20,000 emails from the Democratic National Committee.

The creator of the website Wikileaks that published the emails, Julian Assange, denies Russian involvement.  But it's the question of why Vladimor Putin would seek to influence the U.S. election that has become controversial.

The White House says Putin hacked the DNC to elect Donald Trump president.  There is zero evidence for that it's pure speculation.  But by inference, Democrats are accusing Trump of the crime, desperately looking for a way to deflect attention from the corruption and hypocrisy discovered in the emails.

The Hill:

“I think we are probably in full-scale, ‘Yes, this is Russia trying to influence the election so they can have the person they prefer at the top of the American government,’” said Jason Healey, a director at the Atlantic Council who has worked on cyber defenses at the White House.

The leak of the DNC emails last week was a bombshell, providing clear evidence that officials in the committee were actively working against the campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). 

The controversy has marred the start of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia and forced the DNC chairwoman, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla.), to resign.

From the beginning, there has been little doubt that the breach of the committee's systems — exposed in June — was the work of Russian intelligence. Multiple security firms have conducted a forensic analysis of the committee’s systems and found strong evidence pointing to a pair of well-known groups affiliated with the Kremlin.

At the time, the breach looked like traditional intelligence gathering. Political committees are a high-value target for any government seeking to predict the outcome of a national election, experts say.

Some security experts then posited that the hack could be a bid by the Russians to influence the election in some way, but the underlying evidence was too tenuous to make a strong case.

But the timing of Friday’s email dump — on the eve of the Philadelphia convention — changed that assessment for many. Experts say they no longer have any doubt that Russia is trying to influence the outcome of November’s contest.

“The timing, the way this is being done, makes it obvious that this is an attempt to damage the Democratic presidential campaign,” said Scott Borg, director of the nonprofit research institute U.S. Cyber Consequences Unit.

The FBI on Monday said it has opened an investigation into the DNC hack “to determine the nature and scope of the matter."

“A compromise of this nature is something we take very seriously, and the FBI will continue to investigate and hold accountable those who pose a threat in cyberspace,” the FBI said in a statement.

This is an example of taking an outcome the release of emails before the DNC and using it as "evidence."  It is suggestive nothing more.  Beyond that, those who think Putin is trying to get Trump elected have to come up with a reason why he would want Trump instead of Clinton to deal with.

The mutual admiration society is one thing.  Trump also admired Saddam Hussein and has said nice things about North Korean leader Kim.  That certainly doesn't mean Kim cares whether Trump is elected or not.

Putin may like Trump, but does he really want an "America First" president to negotiate with?  There's scant evidence of that.  Trump might bend in some areas of mutual concern, but he would take a stand in others. 

As far as Hillary Clinton is concerned, she is a well known quantity with the Russian government a predictability any nation craves.  Put simply, there is no discernible advantage for Putin to favor one candidate over the other.

That said, Putin likes stirring the pot.  If they are responsible for the hack, this could be nothing more than Putin reminding the American government of what he's capable of.