Russian Federation tried to hack USA voting systems for months

A report from the NSA said that Russian intelligence hacked a U.S. voting software company. Above Russian President Vladimir Putin

On the same day that The Intercept published details from a classified intelligence report on Russian efforts to hack US voting systems just days before the November election, a federal contractor was charged with leaking the material.

The Intercept's reporting reveals new details behind the conclusion of US intelligence agencies that Russian intelligence services were seeking to infiltrate state voter registration systems as part of a broader effort to interfere in the election, discredit Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and help then Republican candidate Donald Trump win the election.

The classified National Security Agency report, which was published online by The Intercept, does not say whether the hacking had any effect on election results. Late last August, the report says that these hackers sent emails that seemed to be from Google to workers at an election software company in the USA, the report said. A second official confirmed The Intercept document was authentic and did not dispute that the charges against victor were directly tied to it. The news outlet contacted the intelligence agency on May 30, saying it had received what appeared to be a classified document.

The US Justice Department said on Monday (5 June) that victor was a contractor with Pluribus International Corporation and was assigned to a US government agency facility in Georgia.

The hackers are believed to have then used data from that operation to create a new email account to launch a spear-phishing campaign targeting USA local government organizations, the document said.

The U.S. voting software company was not directly identified in the report, but is believed to be Florida-based VR Systems, which provides software for eight states: New York, California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.

USA intelligence officials tell CNN that the information has not changed the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment, which found: "Russian intelligence obtained and maintained access to elements of multiple U.S. state or local electoral boards".

The Intercept said that the agency, Washington's most important signals intelligence body, sought first to dissuade them from publishing it, and then requested redactions. The intelligence report, citing unspecified information the NSA obtained in April, suggests the government is now satisfied that Moscow was the culprit.

"My client has no (criminal) history, so it's not as if she has a pattern of having done anything like this before", Nichols said in a phone interview Monday.

While neither the information or the outlet were identified, the information was also described as a report dated May 5. "She is a very good person". When she was questioned, she admitted removing the intelligence and mailing it to the news outlet.

A sworn affidavit from FBI Special Agent Justin Garrick only said that the document contained "defense information". He said the agency that housed the report determined only six employees had made physical copies.

"I think she's trying to be fearless for me", Billie Winner said.

An internal audit revealed victor was one of six people who printed the document, but the only one who had email contact with the news outlet, according to the complaint.

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