back to article US says it's identified six Russian officials as DNC hack suspects

The US government has identified "more than six members of the Russian government" involved in hacking the Democratic National Committee's computers and leaking information during last year's presidential election. The Wall Street Journal reports that Justice Department officials are in the early stages of deciding whether to …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Round up the usual suspects

    It's been a while since I watched Casablanca...

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They have to find some Russians to blame because of the wild accusations that have been tossed about, otherwise they will lose face over it.

    1. Tom Paine Silver badge

      Well, then, there won't be any evidence that will stand up in court, will there, and you - uh, /they/ won't have anything to worry about. Goodness, how silly the Feds are going to look when they have to stand there in court, red-faced, and confess that they just made it all up.

  3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Prosecutions? I'd have thought Trump would have given them some kind of reward.

    1. Not also known as SC

      Seriously, the more I read about this the more confused I get.

      Are the Russians meant to have helped Trump win or were they trying to help Clinton? It seems to vary every time I read about this. Some reports say that the Russians were trying to undermine democracy by highlighting social inequalities in the States - which either exist so should be highlighted, or if the social inequalities don't exist wouldn't it be easy to show otherwise - hence no undermining? My understanding hasn't been helped either by Trump alienating nearly all of the media so that any reports of what he says is going to be (deservedly?) biased against him?

      1. Captain Badmouth

        Re : "confused"

        "Are the Russians meant to have helped Trump win or were they trying to help Clinton?"

        Assuming there is some Russian involvement, put aside those two separate aims, and ask whether the aim was to cast doubt on the election itself and both characters involved.

        1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

          Re: Re : "confused"

          ask whether the aim was to cast doubt on the election itself and both characters involved


          "People where shitting all over the place (actually have been since like forever) so we deviously brought more shit in to make them believe they were actually in a shithouse."


          "I find the lack of coherence in your plan disturbing!"

          Soviet Choke him!

      2. Tom Paine Silver badge

        Are the Russians meant to have helped Trump win or were they trying to help Clinton? It seems to vary every time I read about this.

        What on earth are you reading, RT? Sputnik? Breitbart?

      3. John Presland

        Social inequalities in the US, massive and disgraceful as they are, are actually smaller than those in Russia. (World Bank Human Development Indicators: 2013: GINI - US 40.8, Russia 40.1.)

  4. wolfetone

    What about Seth Rich's murder?

    1. Alistair Silver badge

      I somehow suspect that even if they had a 3000fps full colour 4k video of Kennedy's assassination in which the bullet could be seen leaving the barrel of Lee's gun and tearing into Kennedy, wolfetone would still be pointing at the "Babushka" asking "but what about her?"

    2. Tom Paine Silver badge

      What about Seth Rich's murder?

      Jesus, what's happened? Since when were there InfoWars nutters on El Reg??

      1. wolfetone

        Remember when those nutters were saying the Government were spying on it's people?

        Are they still nutters?

        1. phuzz Silver badge

          "Remember when those nutters were saying the Government were spying on it's people?

          Are they still nutters?"

          Well, those selfsame people are still claiming that the illuminati are spying on us via fillings, so yeah, they're still nutters. A stopped clock is still right twice a day and all that.

      2. Anonymous Bloward

        Same ones that haven't forgotten about CNN admitting they invented the Russia hacking scandal?

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        > "Well, those selfsame people are still claiming that the illuminati are spying on us via fillings..."

        Yes, we know. Your 'side' has declared those emails to have been 'hacked' so anyone who looks at the evidence and thinks differently is a nutter by proclamation. Never mind that the emails have been shown forensically to have been copied far too rapidly for it to have been done via a web connection. Forget about how Rich (who was in a perfect position to take the emails and who had a strong motive to do so) was gunned down late at night on the street, with nothing taken from the body. Forget that the killing happened just a week after the emails showed up.

        None of that matters because the Truth has been decided.

        1. phuzz Silver badge

          Who the fuck is Rich? What bloody emails?

          I was making a general point about predictions of government spying and you seem to be taking it as part of some long running argument that I'm not party to.

          Still, at least you managed not to look like a nutter eh?

        2. Brangdon Bronze badge

          re: have been copied far too rapidly for it to have been done via a web connection

          So someone copied them a second time after the initial download? The timestamp data isn't as compelling as you seem to think.

      4. MrReal


        Those same nutters told us they'd be a mossad op at 9/11 which would start 7 wars in the middle east.

        Nutter General Wesley Clark even had a list from Wolofowitz you can see him chatting about on youtube.

        Since then we've had Christopher Bollyn and others debunk 9/11 and seen Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Somalia and Yemen all attacked and the same people itching to get to the bottom of the list where Iran sits.

        They also told us the US wasn't in Syria to fight ISIS, they were after Assad.

        Now ISIS is gone the US is officially saying they are staying to depose Assad.

        Clearly we should only listen to people like Blair who told us about Saddam's WMDs and that Gaddafi always left the toilet seat up and thus had to be destroyed.

        Next we'll have NASA telling us there's loads of water on the moon but Buzz missed it because he was concentrating on his golf stroke...

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So how do they know it's these 6 members of Russian government?

    Did they sign the programs with their own personal certificates or did they leave it in the comments of the code to say who wrote it?

    Now I may be wrong here but I think they have f*ck all and this is a bigger fishing trip than the time those three blokes went looking for a shark off Amity island.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Either it was criminally negligent security on a crappy home email server that would let any GOP script kiddie in or it was super military grade system that only a crack team of Russian government cyber ninjas could have broken into.

      Unless of course that's what the Belgian Illuminati want you to think

      1. Phukov Andigh Bronze badge

        if the old card game taught me anything

        it's the Girl Scouts who are behind it all. The cookies are merely the front and funding!

        1. Chris G Silver badge

          Re: if the old card game taught me anything

          Also, what's in the cookies?

      2. kellerr13

        Crack teams

        If it was a crack team of Russian government cyber ninjas then I am sure they used the very basic practice of randomizing IP and MAC addresses. All hackers worth their salt automate that step and have their router check for it as redundancy.

        The only way a Russian address would be in there if somebody intentionally put it in.

        1. Tom Paine Silver badge

          Re: Crack teams


          Why yes, randomised IP addresses are essential when setting the src IP in the packets you send at your target to set up a TCP connection. That way it has no idea where to route it's responses and errrrr oh wait.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Crack teams

            I think what he was getting at as I'm sure everyone knows is that if you are going to hack you need to hop through compromised systems that don't keep logs. The randomisation is by switching compromised systems so your IP doesn't stay the same for long allowing whoever is looking to trace your packets back to you. The reasons Russia always get fingered in these things is that it is politically useful and if you are going to hack you would want to take your hack via a country that the other country doesn't have access to the backbone.

            It is for these reasons unless you catch someone in the act at a computer you can never say who it is.

        2. MrReal

          Re: Crack teams

          Crowdstrike put it in.

          Incidentally the 'hack' (file copy to USB stick) occurred a few days AFTER Crowdstrike upped the security on the server to detect and protect against intruders.

      3. Solmyr ibn Wali Barad

        Re: Belgian Illuminati

        Yes, these guys are really good. They have a whole fictional country set up to cover their tracks.

        "Belgium doesn't exist. Belgium is, and has always been, a leftist ruse; a device applied to propagate the Liberal agenda throughout the world."

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I'm guessing the downvoters trust the American government to be completely honest and that identifying a person is infallible when using the tried and trusted method of "identified tools and techniques used", maybe if they get them they could confirm it with a lie detector just to be absolutely sure.

      Unless someone would like to correct me.

      Maybe they got these tools from Kapersky after Israel hacked them? Maybe they share them with North Korea? I think China could possibly have had a hand in this by paying for their lunches and don't get me started on Iraq sending them thank you notes.

      Finally if they are using identified tools and techniques used then why are they only now bringing charges considering that method would imply they already identified them in relation to a previous hack? Could it be the subject hacked and the current climate in America?

      Away with you all, I'm right.

    3. Tom Paine Silver badge

      So how do they know it's these 6 members of Russian government?

      Gee, I dunno,... maybe that's because the indictments haven't been filed or opened yet. But no, they're not open yet, therefore there IS no evidence and never will be.

      D'you ever listen to The News Quiz on Radio 4? D'you remember Miles Jupp's description of the F.A. management who appeared before the DCMS Select Committee the other week? Cos it's an arsewit carnival here today, too.

    4. Teiwaz Silver badge

      So how do they know it's these 6 members of Russian government?

      Some CSI type shit probably, a GUI in Visual BAsic to track their IP...., bingo, these are the guys we want, commander in chief, and Uncle Sams an uncle....

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fake news!

    That is all.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    LOL ignore what was FOUND

    and focus on WHO broke the thing open. Genius media manipulation right there.

    Reverse the parties, and NO ONE would care WHO cracked it open, but WHAT was found.

    "sure we found a hundred TB of child pron, six crates of pure cocaine, and admissions to the Lindberg kidnapping- but was the thief who cracked the storage unit open an illegal immigrant, and which nation sent him?"

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    Incident response firm Mandiant ..

    Isn't it a co-incidence that Mandiant found evidence of Russian hacking considering that Russia is Washington's current international bogeyman. While Mandiant is at it, why not investigate who at the CIA hacked into the US Senate intelligence committee tasked with investigating CIA torture. Mandiant, owned by FireEye the cyber security outfit run by Israeli Intelligence. I'd be more worried about Israeli Intelligence having such deep tendrils into the US security infrastructure. Are stories such as the above designed to distract from the real buggers.

    When is the BBC going to do an analysis on the contents of the DNC / Clinton emails, rather than on where the server was located or if it violated government policy :)

    1. Tom Paine Silver badge

      Re: Incident response firm Mandiant ..

      The most depressing thing is that you morons are real humans, and have accounts and posting histories showing you're not software or being paid by Putin. You're just exceptionally dimwitted. God help us when the war comes.

      1. veti Silver badge

        Re: Incident response firm Mandiant ..

        @Tom Paine: I think you underestimate both Putin's trolls and their software.

      2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

        Re: Incident response firm Mandiant ..

        God help us when the war comes.

        Please enlighten us, oh neocon lord!

        Pretty depressing that El Reg actually filters commentary linking to the debunking of both the "DNC hack" fakery and the "US intelligence community unanimous" NYT-peddled crap. Instead we get McCarthy screeds (Kieren or otherwise).

        But bread is buttered in many ways.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Incident response firm Mandiant ..

        @Tom Paine: "The most depressing thing is" ..

        The UK has blood on its hands. What's happening in Syria, a war crime that Americas best buddy is happy to be complicit in. If the editors didn't see need to repost neocon propaganda on here, then I wouldn't see the need to respond with some facts.

        The Fraud of the White Helmets

        Syria : White Helmets ... EXPOSED!

        CrossTalk: White Helmets, Really?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ah, Russians

    I'm guessing the six Russian officials are still in Russia? So all the US has to do is extradite them to the US to answer questions and possibly stand trial. Should be pretty easy. I mean, they got Edward Snowden after just a couple of days, right? What? You mean this is all political hand-waving and impotent finger-pointing? Say it isn't so...

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Two separate incidents, John Podesta's eMail "hacked" by the standard "please change your email password" phishing technique - the sort of thing any email administrator sees hundreds of every day, and a slightly more elaborate hack of the DNC server(s). The DNC servers have been examined only by a private firm (run by an anti-Russian fanatic) and that server has NOT been investigated by any of the intelligence people, that is none, zip, nada.They're taking Crowdstrike's info on their word; the DNC REFUSED to let their server be examined by the FBI - possibly scared of what they might find !

    So any attribution to any Russians is pure speculation and spin. Then there's the very strange saga of "Guccifer 2" claiming to be the person behind the hack. A person who uses "Felix Dzerzhinsky" as a handle in the documents, and the strange case of 4 sets of "Russian" meta-data inserted into stale hacked DNC documents (only 4, and definitely inserted into documents that didn't have that metadata to start with). The dates and times, though obfuscated, point to the hack being perpetrated from a location using EST (Eastern Standard Time - in the US), adds further to the underlying mysterious nature of the whole affair.

    It does have the look and feel of a large scale deception operation.

  11. Alistair Silver badge

    "Identified" as the key verb here.

    Identifying who is in some position.

    I doubt that anything they have in hand would put these six "officials" in charge of a keyboard used to "hack" the DNC. Interesting that it took that long to figure out the hierarchy of Russian intelligence.

    Personally I suspect that some idiot had a backup of some portion of the DNC's data sitting on a usb key that ended up under some leaves on someone's sidewalk in Dnepropetrovsk. "Just on accident". Due to an "outsourcing" error. By some cloud hosting company. With three letters in its name.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hacking 101

    Everybody pay close attention.

    1. ALWAYS change your IP address

    2. ALWAYS change your MAC address

    3. SPOOF a fake IP / MAC address if you want somebody else to be blamed.

    These steps are AUTOMATED for anybody that knows what they are doing, and nation states have their Routers check to make sure it's all randomized or spoofed and if it's not all trafic from their side is prevented.

    Russia making a mistake like that is like forgetting to put on your shoes as you walk out into the snow. it just doesn't happen.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Tom Paine Silver badge

      Re: Hacking 101

      This is utter, UTTER bollocks, as anyone with the slightest knowledge of IP networking, "hacking", ethernet and such will confirm.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Did You See Me Do It?

    I'm curious how they could manage to attach names to anyone involved. Or is it a case of we believe the Russian government is responsible and we think these people oversee the appropriate departments?

    1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: Did You See Me Do It?

      Just pull some random Slavic names out of a hat. Worked well for Senator McCarthy 60 years ago, should work well today too.

  14. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Big Brother

    Russia is everywhere, it is even the opposition!

    Anti-Trump Resistance Played By Russia: Growing Evidence That Russia Using ‘The Resistance’ To Stoke Division

    The weekend after Trump’s election, thousands of people attended a left-wing anti-Trump protest in New York City that was secretly organized by Russian operatives, ads released by the House Intelligence Committee revealed.

    Where is Gordon Freeman? We need him to shore up the Resistance and have him get Breen, I mean Putin.

    In other news, Congress thinks people are dumb as bricks (makes you wonder what they think they are accomplishing by having people vote in the first place?): Great Moments in Congressional Hearings

  15. Miss Config
    Thumb Up

    Spot The Putin Trolls

    The Reg can find out how important it is as far as the Russian government is concerned by seeing how many posts on this thread can be classed as "trolling by Putin's goons".

  16. aquaman

    I get why Russian-paid trolls are posting the crap about Set Rich, but I really hope people realize it's garbage. Even some of the alt-reality spinners at Fox had to admit it's untrue (although they already knew that). In fact, it's utter shit, and his own family has pleaded with people to stop. So please stop it. Propagating this crap just adds to their pain.

  17. MrReal

    Seth Rich

    We have avid Bernie Sanders supporter Seth Rich, who watched the DNC sabotage his candidate and fatally decides to hand a memory stick of email data to Wikileaks (corroborated by Kim Dotcom and pretty much by Assange too).

    Then there's a Podesta email saying they're going to make an example of leakers and shortly after Seth gets whacked (not a robbery as nothing was stolen).

    So we have clear Means, Motive and Opportunity for Seth Rich, together with his death - a hallmark of people around the Clintons - the body count is around 115 so far IIRC.

    On the other side we have Mueller and his FBI (who has never inspected the DNC server - they only let their private contractor 'Crowdstrike' near that, and it's Crowdstrike who told everyone it was the Russians).

    So the FBI has zero evidence it was a Russian hacker. The NSA has no evidence. Neither does the CIA. Or the State department. Or the DOD.

    So yes, obviously we need to finger 6 Russians for it, it all makes perfect sense. CNN told us it was the Russians, so it MUST be true.

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