WASHINGTON – The U.S. government on Friday accused Russia of being behind recent cyber-attacks, including the hack that targeted the Democratic National Committee.
“The U.S. Intelligence Community is confident that the Russian Government directed the recent compromises of e-mails from U.S. persons and institutions, including from U.S. political organizations,” the Department of Homeland Security and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence said in a joint statement.
Publication of hacked e-mails by sites such as DCLeaks.com WikiLeaks and the person or group known as Guccifer 2.0 “are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts,” according to the statement.
“These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the U.S. election process,” the government agencies said. “We believe, based on the scope and sensitivity of these efforts, that only Russia’s senior-most officials could have authorized these activities.”
In July, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton blamed Russia for the hack that led to the publication of some 20,000 DNC e-mails.
The e-mails revealed that the DNC sought to undermine Clinton’s rival for the Democratic nomination, Sen. Bernie Sanders.
Bloomberg News raised the issue of the DNC hack in an interview last month with Russian President Vladimir Putin, who denied any involvement by Moscow.
“The important thing is the content that was given to the public,” Putin told the news agency. “But I want to tell you again, I don’t know anything about it, and on a state level Russia has never done this.”