Truth to Power

Who hacked the candidates networks?

In midsummer, the Obama campaign’s computers were attacked by a virus. The campaign’s tech experts spotted it and took standard precautions, such as putting in a firewall. At first, the campaign figured it was a routine “phishing” attack, using common methods. Or so it seemed. In fact, the campaign had been the target of sophisticated foreign cyber-espionage.

The next day, the Obama headquarters had two visitors: from the FBI and the Secret Service. “You have a problem way bigger than what you understand,” said an FBI agent. “You have been compromised, and a serious amount of files have been loaded off your system.”

The campaign brought in a top tech-security firm to scrub its system. On Aug. 18 an Obama official was summoned to FBI headquarters in Chicago for a briefing, only to be told that the White House had ordered the FBI not to give the briefing. The Obama official asked why, and was told that three hours earlier the Feds had learned that the McCain campaign had been compromised as well.

The security firm retained by the Obama campaign was finally able to remove the virus. On Aug. 20 the Obama campaign got its briefing from the FBI. The Obama team was told that its system had been hacked by a “foreign entity.” </em>

My, isn’t that comforting.


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