Suspected Russian hackers release lawmakers' personal information

By Eric DuVall  |  Aug. 13, 2016 at 2:40 PM
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WASHINGTON, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- A second data dump from suspected Russian hackers who previously breached the Democratic National Committee was released Friday and it included personal cellphone numbers and information for more than 200 Democratic lawmakers.

The information released by the hacker persona known as "Guccifer 2.0" did not come from the DNC this time, but another party campaign arm, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which coordinates races in the House of Representatives.

Unlike the last time, this data dump did not include any embarrassing bombshells like the internal DNC emails released on the eve of the Democratic National Convention, which showed staff members at the supposedly neutral DNC openly attempting to influence the race in favor of Hillary Clinton over her opponent, Sen. Bernie Sanders. Those emails caused the DNC's chair, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, along with several top aides, to resign.

In releasing the documents, the hackers, who U.S. intelligence officials believe are backed by the Russian government, said there is still more information to be made public.

"It's time for new revelations now," the hacker wrote in posting the files. "All of you may have heard about the DCCC hack. As you see I wasn't wasting my time! It was even easier than in the case of the DNC breach."

Intelligence officials told congressional leaders and lawmakers on the House and Senate intelligence committees this week the hacking extended well beyond just the DNC, as originally reported. Officials now believe hackers cast a much wider net, including the DCCC, the Democratic Governors Association and members of Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign staff.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi likened the data breach to a "digital Watergate."

Democrats, however, may not be the only ones targeted, Politico reported.

The private security firm ThreatConnect analyzed data published by the website DC Leaks, saying it bore similarities to Russian hackers. They also said the individuals behind the Guccifer 2.0 persona provided reporters secure links to documents housed on the site but not yet published.

Some of the documents published by DC Leaks include emails from Republican lawmakers who were also apparently hacked, though none were of a particularly newsworthy nature.

DC Leaks has posted internal emails from Sen. John McCain's 2016 campaign, 2016 presidential candidate Sen. Lindsey Graham and 2012 presidential candidate Michele Bachmann. The emails included press releases, an employment application for McCain's campaign and other day-to-day correspondence.

ThreatConect said there is convincing evidence DC Leaks is affiliated with or controlled by the suspected Russian hackers working under the Guccifer 2.0 pseudonym and the GOP posts show that, at a minimum, Democrats have not been the sole targets.

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