Top US intelligence agencies have warned that US allies will be targets of future cyber attacks from Russia, following the country’s attempts to undermine US democracy and get Donald Trump elected.
“We assess Moscow will apply lessons learned from its campaign aimed at the US presidential election to future influence efforts in the United States and worldwide, including against US allies and their election processes,” the report read.
A highly classified report, given to president Barack Obama and sections of which were made public on Friday, reveals that the CIA, the FBI and the NSA all concurred that Russia used cyber warfare and state-funded social media “trolls” to spread negative information about Hillary Clinton and to help Mr Trump win the election.
Russia reportedly gained access to the Democratic National Committee servers from May 2015 to June the following year and passed on Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta’s and Ms Clinton’s emails to WikiLeaks.
In return, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was given a platform on state-run media outlet RT to criticise the US.
The “multifaceted” attacks against the US were directly approved by Russian president Vladimir Putin, US agencies found.
Mr Putin has flatly denied any involvement.
The report, which has been dismissed by Mr Trump, now warns that US allies could be next on the list, as Russia was boosted by its perceived “success” in influencing the public discussion and perception of Ms Clinton.
Mr Trump said after his intelligence briefing on Friday afternoon that although “Russia, China and other countries” consistently try to break into US cyber systems, Russia had not had any effect on the outcome of the election.
The attempt to help Mr Trump was reportedly to ensure Russia could advance its positions in Syria and Ukraine, and was fuelled by Mr Putin’s personal vendetta against Ms Clinton, dating back to 2011 when she publicly criticised the Kremlin.
Mr Obama said in December that he had last spoken to Mr Putin directly about the hacking at the G20 meeting in China in September, and had told him to “cut it out”.
In the UK, prime minister Theresa May has made several moves against Russia, including quietly blocking ogliarchs from the Conservative Party and calling for Russia to be punished for its bombing of Syria.Reuse content