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Donald Trump blames Democrats for being hacked and says they were 'careless'

Barack Obama has ordered a report into alleged Russian cyber-meddling in the election

Andrew Buncombe
New York
Wednesday 04 January 2017 14:08 GMT
Mr Trump has steadfastly denied that Russia tried to meddle in the US election
Mr Trump has steadfastly denied that Russia tried to meddle in the US election (AP)

Donald Trump has accused the Democratic National Committee of being careless over its online security, after Wikileaks founder Julian Assange said it could have been hacked by a “14-year-old”.

In an interview with Fox News that was broadcast on Tuesday night, Mr Assange said a teenager could have hacked into the computer of John Podesta, the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s election campaign, and the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

“We published several…emails which show Podesta responding to a phishing email,” said Mr Assange. “Podesta gave out that his password was the word ‘password’. His own staff said this email that you’ve received, this is totally legitimate. So, this is something ... a 14-year-old kid could have hacked Podesta that way.”

Some of the emails were leaked on the eve of the Democratic National Convention last July, and revealed that some DNC staff had conspired to undermine Ms Clinton’s rival, Bernie Sanders.

The US intelligence community has reportedly concluded Russia was behind the hacking, and passed the information to Wikileaks.

They believe Russia’s meddling was designed to benefit Mr Trump. Russia, and Mr Trump, have denied that Moscow was behind the hacking. Wikileaks has declined to say where the emails came from, but Mr Assange said they were not from “any state party”.

Julian Assange questions Seth Rich death

In a tweet on Wednesday morning, in which he initially spelled Mr Assange’s name incorrectly, Mr Trump wrote: “Julian Assange said ‘a 14-year-old could have hacked Podesta’ – why was DNC so careless? Also said Russians did not give him the info!”

The evening before, Mr Trump had claimed that intelligence officials due to brief the President-elect on various issues, including the findings of a probe into the alleged Russian hacking, had postponed the meeting.

“The “Intelligence” briefing on so-called “Russian hacking” was delayed until Friday, perhaps more time needed to build a case. Very strange!” he said.

The US intelligence community has hit back, telling various media outlets that no such meeting had been fixed.

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