Russians Hacked Ukrainian Gas Company at Center of Impeachment

The timing and scale of the attacks suggest the Russians may be looking for the same kind of damaging information on Joe Biden that President Trump wanted from Ukraine, security experts say.

Comments: 188

  1. With this revelation, perhaps: 1. The pressure on GOP Senators, to try to the appearance of witness suppression/cover-up, is so great they would vote 4+ GOP Senators to allow the testimony--IF they voted. A. So instead, McConnell will allow the 4 witnesses without requiring a vote by GOP Senators (which vote would be a damaging roll call). A. In doing so, McConnell would then rely on Trump's claim of Executive Privilege to try to suppress/cover up the testimony. B. But the Democrats will object and (with or without a ruling from Justice Roberts) force a vote on the issue--or Bolton or other witnesses might be fed up, not want to be seen as part of a cover-up, and testify anyway, with or without subpoena or executive privilege claim. 2. The GOP will not call Biden or his son. The reason: the Democrats then would go into the Trump-favoring Russian hacks, just like 2016, described in this article. The Russians just got lazy, and got caught. Pelosi: A. 3 weeks ago McConnell thought she had few cards and he could get away with blocking the witnesses, using the Clinton previous full witness development to block witnesses here. (The argument just made him look stuffy, condescending and generally ridiculous.j B. A political visionary--a genius...bringing more surprises. than Santa, for the Grinches.

  2. It is hard to understand how any GOP Senator or Republican in America can call himself 'a patriot' and an unswerving supporter of Trump and his corrupt presidency whilst - at the same time - silently accepting that Trump has actually been put into power through a foreign power which America considered its No. 1 enemy on the global political stage for decades.

  3. @Karin Of course, no reputable source, including the NYT, says that Trump won because of the Russians (who, like almost everyone else, thought he was going to lose), but other than that, I agree with your argument.

  4. Sneering aside James, don't you wonder about the reasons for the Russian efforts to install and keep Trump in the White House?

  5. @james At the same time, no reputable source is able to say with certainty that he was NOT elected as a result of the Russian efforts. Whether they or he thought he would lose is immaterial.

  6. Clearly, Russia would like the information on Joe Biden and his son Hunter's unethical and corrupt more than quid pro quo dealings in Ukraine to use against them. In a different vein, Trump wanted info on any corruption in Ukraine before he OKed billions of American taxpayer money going to Ukraine. The Bidens with Obama's apparent OK, seem to be one corrupt entity among others that Trump also would be responsible as our president to detect among other corrupt entities in Ukraine. When Biden finally decided to run against Trump such info would obviously help Trump's campaign---a windfall.

  7. @Peter Lots of falsehoods in your repetition of Trump mythology, but let’s just take one. Trump was never interested in corruption in Ukraine. He never mentioned the word in his calls with Zelenskiy, or his discussions with his own staff. The only things Trump wanted were dirt on Biden and the nonexistent server, which he pushed for repeatedly.

  8. @Peter This is nuts. To begin with a simple non-political lie (shy?): What "billions of American taxpayer money" are you talking about? The Ukraine aid involved in the phone call was $391 MILLION. And Trump concerns about corruption? Risible. Let's see his tax returns!

  9. @Peter What nonsense. Trump wanted an announcement of “an investigation” on CNN. He had zero interest in corruption. The word never passed his lips. Trump’s a con man, and a con man always needs a willing dupe. Congratulations.

  10. Russia wants to keep Trump in the White House for as long as possible. He's very useful to Putin, both as a deliberately willing pawn but also as a dupe in ways Trump can't imagine. Russia's hacking of Burisma is Plan B to get information on Trump's political opponents after Trump's impeachable, Plan A effort to get President Zelenski into a "public box" about investigating Joe Biden's son. As important as the Biden connection is to Trump, which Russia is apparently still trying to deliver, don't forget that Trump wanted to deflect attention away from Russia's 2016 election hacking, and that Moscow Mitch McConnell has been blocking investigations into Russian interference all along. And the entire GOP cohort on USA's Capitol Hill is knowingly aiding and abetting.

  11. How can there be any more doubt that Putin intends to do whatever he can to keep Trump in the White House? He knows Trump will continue to help him in exchange for Putin's illicit electoral meddling on his behalf. What would Reagan think? What would Republicans then and now think if Russia was caught aiding a Democrat?

  12. Can't say I think the Russians have US' best reme interests as their objectives! However, if they were to turn up evidence of Sleepy Joe helping Hunter to get his millions, it would be interesting, no? It's not as if the information hackers stole from the DNC was inaccurate -- the problem was that it was all too accurate. I guess that from a Democratic standpoint, it is better that corruption remain hidden, whether hidden from official Ukrainian investigation or from unofficial Russian hacking .....

  13. @ James Really? You think the Russians have our best interests at heart? You think the Russians are interested in rooting out corruption? You think the Russians would not create lies and propaganda to help keep their puppet in the Oval office? Incredible.

  14. Hacked!? "A company can spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on firewalls, intrusion detection systems and encryption and other security technologies, but if an attacker can call one trusted person within the company, and that person complies, and if the attacker gets in, then all that money spent on technology is essentially wasted." - Kevin Mitnick

  15. What makes anyone think that Fancy Bear did not use the same tactics described in the article to "dig for dirt" in the Trump Organization (or Deutsche Bank) years ago? That would explain a lot.

  16. Robert Mueller and Congress "allowed" this sort of behavior when they didn't push back aggressively on AG Barr twhen he effectively spun the conspiracy charges and especially the obstruction charges away last spring. The press bears significant responsibility by simply shrugging and moving on as they chased the next trump tweet. The mainstream media continues to "give permission" by rushing and half-fasting their coverage of the torrent of unconstitutional behavior, policy, and criminality cascading out of the White House. They normalized abnormality. Many Americans know how criminal this administration is and they will act accordingly in November. My fear is that the horribly unfocused press coverage is short-changing the people with stunted information, unconnected dots, and they won't get the lede for all the outrageous, childish antics of trump. Don't print what he says, print what he DOES.

  17. @ReciprocalHokie writes "The press bears significant responsibility by simply shrugging and moving on as they chased the next trump tweet." The press (0and all of us) are targets of a propaganda technique, Russian, of course, called the Firehose of Falsehoods-- spewing false and outrageous statements at such a high rate that it is impossible to react to them all. Seems to be working. Not good. https://www.rand.org/pubs/perspectives/PE198.html

  18. What’s the deal with the DNC server? If there’s some mystery about its location why doesn’t the DNC staff simply produce it with a flourish and force the Donald to move on to some other matter?

  19. @JPE Think about it for a minute. Where’s your gmail server? There is no physical server, the emails are in the cloud. Trump spreads this lie because low information voters fall for it. Don’t fall for this canard...

  20. It’s not A server. And it was produced. They know where it is.

  21. @John Ranta The canard is exactly what you were perpetuating. The DNC did not use GMail or any other cloud services. Like Hillary, the DNC had an actual physical server on which their email system was managed. Like Hillary, they refused to turn it over to the FBI/State for forensic examination. The only difference is that Hillary never claimed her server was hacked, contrary to the rumor Papadopolous was spreading around.

  22. A month after the Berlin Wall fell, a KGB officer in East Germany brandished a pistol -threatening to shoot anyone who entered the Soviet’s intelligence agency offices. He then burned reams of secret KGB files. This officer, who also worked in partnership with the East German Secret Police, stood in direct opposition to democracy, to America, to Ronald Reagan’s words, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” His name? Vladimir Putin. 
As this article reveals, Russia continues to work to undercut our democracy. Know your enemy.

  23. @BWalters The enemy isn't just Russia. The real enemy within is the GOP which is actively trying to destroy the Constitution and democracy itself. Republicans are beyond the pale.

  24. Clearly our president is the Moscowvian Candidate. The Russians own him are are helping him again. But this is not the issue. It is those who enable Rump. They know what is going on and this is a win at any cost strategy. People like Moscow Mitch and Lindsey the Lenin, Etc are just as guilty. It comes to this, the GOP must be removed from power by the people of this great nation. They must go from major party to minor party. Their numbers should drop so that they can't obstruct the majority. A clear message must be sent to them that if they persist they will never be trusted with any power again. Vote in 2020

  25. @David Meli Actually, you don't want me to vote, nor 60+ million of my fellows.

  26. @Tom Carlstrom No one is suggesting you and the 60+ million don’t vote, but does it not give you pause when the Russians are once again meddling in our election, which is counter to the Constitution. Do you expect Pres. Donald J. Trump to condemn or even criticize the hacking by the Russians this time. If not, why not? I am one of the 63+million and growing who did NOT vote for Trump. Recent actions in Georgia and Wisconsin, removing voters from voter rolls in known Democratic leaning districts, by Republican controlled states strongly suggest just who doesn’t want citizens to vote. Of course, it doesn’t give you pause. The GOP is the end justifies the means party.

  27. @David Meli This was said before the 2016 election. The American people disagreed with you.

  28. I wonder what Putin has on Trump. Mr. Mueller could have been clearer. I wonder when Russia will suffer the same sanctions as Iran? Oh, yeah, never. Republicans should consider their bedfellows. If Trump wins the election, no one will believe in its legitimacy anymore than in they do in the first election. There are consequences for going along with mafia Don.

  29. @George Sogis: Nope. Allowing and even encouraging foreign meddling is not democratic process; but undermining of democratic process which is an impeachable offense in the USA Constitution. Maybe not in your’s, but here it is...

  30. Dr Conde, Trump has never been made to pay for his mistakes and bad behavior. those of us who fear the consequences of his actions are the ones who suffer through his presidency and who see the GOP for what they are. Trump may have a healthy economy, but he is a very sick individual who at his core is a charlatan.

  31. Which suggests that the Russians also know the info is damaging to Biden, showing the likelihood of true corruption in the Biden family ?

  32. @Joe brook That is certainly an extrapolation. What the Russians could easily do here is fabricate information that they 'found' in their hack. They release information not pertinent to the US elections at first that was actually discovered that the company must confirm is real/not real. Then they wait and release fabricated information in order to damage Biden, if he's the nominee.

  33. @Joe brook No, not really. This actually suggests that they have nothing and are getting desperate. Here's a suggestion... Russian?

  34. @Joe brook: No, it only shows that, consistent with other Russian and Trump/GOP disinformation campaigns, accusations do not need to be true in order to damage their intended targets. It’s like that classic question, “Tell me, Senator, do you still beat your wife?” Simply asking an untrue but slanderous question is enough to slander the target. The tactic here is to spread so much conspiratorial noise, confusion and emotional hatred that people will give up trying to sort truth from lies. The goal is to breed mutual mistrust and apathy, whereby voters, exhausted by the continual onslaught of Dreck, will either stay home or retreat into predictable, quantifiable and easily manipulated partisan camps.

  35. Dear Joe I am praying that there is nothing in your background that could embarrass you in the upcoming election. The Russians and trump will wait until the general election to bring it forward and knock you out of the game. The stakes are very high for any democratic candidate to run on vanity

  36. @Peter Don't worry, Bernie will win the primaries. Biden's support is too soft and based solely on name recognition. He's toast when the half dozen video clips of Joe Biden not only supporting the Iraq War but championing it, and the other half dozen video clips over the past few decades of Joe Biden arguing to freeze and/or cut Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid circulating on YouTube are finally picked up by the mainstream media. Can you imagine if Bernie was on tape with those sentiments? It'd be on a loop on cable news. #DoubleStandard

  37. This is bigger than Joe Biden. If another person is nominated by the Democrats, Putin has the same incentive to cast dirt or hype rumors (as in the Pizzagate slur on Hillary in 2016) on any rival to Trump. In this election year, if we don’t have a technological wall against foreign meddling, then we need to be alert and skeptical. As Oscar Wilde observed, every saint has a past and every sinner has a future. Late-breaking “news” on candidates with a long public record should be discounted and attention kept on the flailing theatrics by Trump in the past four years.

  38. @ReciprocalHokie --Biden's support soft??? True, he is not an exciting candidate, but he is not a screaming, old Socialist!! Bernie's support is by and large a large segment of very young people. Beyond that the man is dead meat with other voters. Doubt he is even second choice amongst older voters.

  39. After the revelation that Russia had hacked the 2016 election, trump suggested a joint Russian / US intelligence agency to work on internet crime. Is that where we are today?

  40. Perhaps the Times should ask a few of their top reporters to apply for a job at the NSA, we have to depend on investigative reporting to uncover new evidence related to Trump's efforts to get Russian and other foreign nations to interfere in our elections. No one in the House or Senate was aware of these hacking reports until they were published in the NY Times. Since no special prosecutor was assigned by Congress, there seems to be little process available to get to the truth, especially when the president is illegally withholding documents and witnesses that have been legally subpoenaed. I suppose that the House could ask for testimony from the private security organization who uncovered this latest attack by Russia, or will the president claim absolute immunity for them as well? We certainly can't count on the Senate to do their sworn duty, having had their ranks filled by cowardly sycophants, such as my own senator, Lindsey Graham, who will be judged harshly in the shameful history of this administration. Where are those previously patriotic republicans who recognized the danger posed by our greatest adversary? Is holding on to their office really all that important to them? Do they retain even a shred of decency, or any allegiance to the constitution and the American people?

  41. @Yakker The mighty $$$$$$$$$$$ is all that matters.

  42. Putin's thugs and Trump could simply manufacturer fake news about the Bidens and distribute through freimdly sources, e.g., Fox or other right wing conspiracy sites. Truth no longer matters as democracy slowly fades in America.

  43. @Bruce ~ Isn't that what Giuliani is already doing?

  44. @novoad Exactly!

  45. A little known fact has just come to light through careful investigation on my part: trump and putin are identical twins.!! OK, I made this up, but being an identical twin myself it isn’t quite as absurd as one might think. The Russians have everything to gain by exposing dirt on Biden and his son. Hacking into Burisma is one part of their strategy to keep our dear leader in power. Yes Putin and trump are not twins but they have similar interests- power.

  46. @Jordan Davies They don't have to discover dirt! They can suggest it, manufacture it. As long as MSM cover it, it'll get traction.

  47. It's obvious that trump is behind this especially when you consider that Giuliani was just in Ukraine conducting his "investigation" which is why trump is so dangerous. He is lawless. Laws do not pertain to him. Honest, decent Americans will never get America back.

  48. Republicans remain an imminent threat to our democracy.

  49. Aren’t they a little early? We don’t even know that Joe will be the winner.

  50. @Bronx Jon Maybe they're just arming themselves so they'll be ready when the nominee is decided. Makes you wonder if they've hacked other systems to dig up something on Sanders, Warren, Bloomberg, Buttigieg, Klobuchar, Steyer, etc etc ...

  51. GRU fellas are responsible professional people and took Trump's calls for help (remember "if you have Hillary's emails, pls send them") seriously.

  52. This story just will not die. Enough is enough. Please, for the love of God, stop it. There is nothing here, was nothing here, and never will be anything here, there, or anywhere. Russia does not control the world, the Earth is not flat, the moon landings really happened, water is wet, and Tom Brady is not the greatest of all time.

  53. Russia does not control the world. But they seem to control trump, as all of his foreign policy benefits them more than the American people.

  54. @Raven Russian interference into US elections is not news? Not sure what/who you are reading but it’s seems fairly clear to the majority of the US intelligence community that there in fact was and is something there. I suggest if you are so tired of hearing the truth you stop reading stories like these and let the rest of us follow the facts.

  55. @Raven Agree on all points except Tom Brady.

  56. Between Giuliani’s trips and this hacking, anything that comes out of Ukraine now will be suspect. Phishing or planting fake documents.... And if Biden is subpoenaed to appear in the Senate Impeachment trial, maybe we could subpoena all those Europeans who joined then VP Biden in getting rid of that corrupt Ukrainian prosecutor. A global group of witnesses. Bring it on.

  57. Or, are the Russians looking to plant "evidence" to "prove" the Bidens are as corrupt as the Trumps?

  58. @Eleanor UkraineGate documentary shows Joe Biden’s ‘someone solid’ for Ukrainian General Prosecutor was anything but ukrainegate.info/part-1-a-not-so-solid-prosecutor/

  59. Why do you think the Russian hackers are only DIGGING for dirt as opposed to PLANTING fake dirt that they can then arrange to be found?

  60. Wow. That's quite a coincidence. The same Russian hackers that helped Impeached Criminal Trump steal the election in 2016 just got caught again trying to help republicans steal the 2020 election. It's too bad we don't have any record of the many, many conversations Trump has had with Putin the past couple of years.

  61. The Russians will do anything to keep Trump in power: he does what he is told.

  62. With so much attention in the media on fake news and Russian interference especially after the last election will it really make a difference in swaying voters on one side or another?

  63. It’s so tempting, since it worked the first time around. The manipulation of weak American minds. Why not do it again.

  64. Russia listened. Soon we will either find out what they dug up. But only if if helps Trump. Otherwise the only thing we will hear is a return to "Lock her up!"

  65. The Russians hacked Burisma in preparation for the 2020 election in case Biden is the Democratic candidate. This would give the Russians the option of releasing selected documents and/or emails through Wikileaks or some other outlet on a schedule that suits their purposes.

  66. I think it's fair to assume the Russians have been looking for dirt on ALL Democrat candidates from the start. The fact that they are willing to do this knowing it will be visible shows some frustration. Surely they would not be so openly in support of Trump against Biden if not necessary. I don't think they have anything.... on Biden.

  67. Time for the CIA and FBI to hack and disseminate Trump’s tax returns (and blame the Russians for it). Let those agencies live up to Trump’s distrust!

  68. @Anna Touche!

  69. And the United States would never interfere in another country's elections.

  70. That makes it okay?

  71. This means that the US administration has also support of the Russian intelligence services. This should be very good news to all Americans. Your government is more solid and stable then anytime in the past, with a wider support base than ever before. Much of the credit should be rightfully claimed by President Trump. Was there any US President, ever, elected in amicable agreement by both US and Russia? BTW, those claims about the biggest ever crowds at inauguration were true. The photos from Washington were showing only a half of the cheering crowd. The other half was gathered elsewhere.

  72. The bottom line appears to be that Putin literally owns Trump from his prior business dealings in Russia. And in return, Trump has signed his soul, as his IOU over to Putin. Don't think any prior President in all of our history has done, or would do anything close to that. Trump's communications along with his continuing refusal to adequately protect our country from this continuing Russian invasiveness says it all. This is and will be a blight on the history of country, forever!

  73. If one assumes that the hackers are looking for 'dirt' on the Bidens you may be missing the point. Consider that the goal is to leave 'tidbits' and misleading information where it can be found with just a bit of effort.

  74. “according to an American security official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive intelligence.” Sure.

  75. @JQGALT And yet, the red hats seemed to believe Intel officials just last week when they decided murdering foreign officials was ok.

  76. @Christopher Is Nancy still in mourning?

  77. What kind of people would collaborate with Russia to dig up dirt on the Bidens? What kind of people would disallow witnesses to come forth in an Impeachment Trial? What kind of people would dare to start a war with Iran to create a diversion to the Impeachment hearings? What kind of people would surround their wagons to cover up political crimes? My radar tells me that it can only be those willing to go out on the limb to protect someone who is Corrupt, Dirty, and GUILTY as charged. America, if you want to stop this interference into our political system, stand up and let your voices be heard. It is our freedom we must protect.. Shame on those in this government willing to go along with this masquerade!

  78. Russia, are you listening? Russian hackers have been hacking into Ukrainian companies, infrastructure and social media platforms for years, especially after they sauntered in to their neighbor's territory. They are masters at it.

  79. As Pelosi stated, with Trump, "All roads lead to Putin." And the GOP is complicit.

  80. Trump Has developed an unnatural relationship with Putin. What leverage does Putin have on Trump? Something on film? Sexual in nature? Incriminating? Something so repulsive that he would lose his fan base? Pope Benedict was the first pope to resign because he ignored the problem and just shifted things around and prayed that the problem would just go away. The GOP faces the same ethical dilemma as Pope Benedict. The problem is that this is a behavior that won’t change in Trump. Trump has offended the wrong people, FBI and CIA. New evidence will continue to flow and this will be death by a thousand cuts. If the GOP is smart, they will get this over with and be done with Trump so the country can heal. The GOP will be devastated as will the country once the truth surfaces about Trump’s unnatural relation with Putin.

  81. Surprise! There is communication of some sort between Trump and Putin. Perhaps the Russians are just acting on their intel, but Trump definitely has pals in the Kremlin. Putin's goal has been to keep our society in turmoil. Its working. But it won't fix Russia. Putin still fails as a leader.

  82. @Ultramayan Trump doesn't have "pals" in Russia, he has his controller. Putin is not a "failed" leader. He has been successful in getting his puppet elected as well as creating turmoil in the West.

  83. This is absolutely no surprise - nay, expected - given that Trump and his High Council are traitors to our country.

  84. As Pelosi stated earlier in her matronly, but direct manner: All roads for Trump lead to Putin. Log this attempted hacking under that.

  85. The Russians work for Trump and Trump works for Putin. It's a symbiotic relationship.

  86. I find it absolutely hysterical that Donald trump could be viewed as a man in search of the truth about ANYTHING< ANYWHERE at ANY TIME!!

  87. Presidential PR in 2020’s alternate universe: Russia’s hacking of the company that Biden’s son worked at has nothing to do with them helping out Trump - they just want to ferret out corruption wherever it happens to be. Lolol

  88. Best avoid Biden as nominee, as Hunter's decision to "work" for Burisma showed extremely poor judgement. If you want a very smart old white man (with excellent judgement) for President, go with Bloomberg.

  89. @Kenneth Brady ....and were Rick Perry and numerous “oil and gas “ officials doing in the Ukraine then? Business as usual or business with the help of Mr.Trump’s ill adviced extortion scheme?

  90. What I don’t hear from anyone is a way of responding to Russia any meaningful way.

  91. Let's not pretend that the US does not hack others. It's Russia hacking a Ukrainian company and based on the comments one would think they hacked DNC again. In any case - hasn't the prevalent theme of the comments for the past 3 years been that if there is no wrongdoing, then Trump or in this case Bidens have nothing to hide and nothing to worry about? In fact, they should encourage release of the hacks. Right?

  92. @Dakota T You seem to under estimate the capabilities of our Russian friends! How do you know they didn’t go in there to create the evidence the Trump team is looking for?

  93. @Dakota T Let’s not pretend the Russians aren’t doing this to protect Donald Trump.

  94. Trump should have involved the Russians early on -- given the task to people who are really proficient at cyber espionage!

  95. Aside from what the hackers may have found, is there not an equal concern about what they may have planted?

  96. @Sidaleaf My thoughts too.

  97. @Sidaleaf If the Russians have emails and passwords, they can easily create fake documents and messages. This will pose a real fact-checking challenge the news organizations that cover it. Commentary Monday on MSNBC indicated that the Russian cyber effort was broad and backed up by traditional spycraft. And if Ukrainian politics is as polarized and corrupted as it is in the U.S., then speculation, unsupported by fact, about Biden's motivations could turn up in the Russian dragnet. If past is prologue, selective Russian disclosures from the Russian operation will find an eager audience in Donald Trump, certain GOP members of Congress, and right-wing news outlets like Fox and Breitbart. There remain questions of how and when. Through Wikileaks or bots on social networks? During the impeachment trial or closer to the elections? It appears the Russians made no effort to cover their tracks. Just the reporting about their cyber attack caused perturbations in the American political system. Whatever comes next could have a more profound effect.

  98. @Sidaleaf No, none at all because Creepy Joe Biden will NOT be the democratic Nominee so it won't matter.

  99. I wonder if hackers can implant false data and documents (not just news) here and there in order to frame people. I don’t know if it’s doable right now, or maybe in the future. I worry about it.

  100. @HLN It is certain they can and do, "planting" evidence presents in rule of law society and has always been a concern. The velocity which information can now travel creates more incentive to "plant" and turn public opinion in society. Your concerns are well founded.

  101. @HLN I’m no IT expert but I have read elsewhere that they can.

  102. @HLN It's easier to leverage social media. Look at Facebook's stance regarding taking political monies for known false advertising. People tend to remember first encounters with information rather than later corrections - if said corrections ever even cross their radar. Trying to plant data would result in date-and-time creation/update/modify, file size, and MD5 hash anomalies that would be difficult to completely erase from a decent computer system. They might be difficult to detect depending upon monitoring and analyst expertise. Changing data on a live system would not change that data on offline backups, which can go back years. So a lot depends upon sophistication and due diligence.

  103. It's the DNC server hacks all over again. Let's see how the media deals with this kind of issue this time around. Do they go along with magnifying the discovered "dirt", no matter if it's true or not and no matter where it came from? Or do they learn from their past mistakes and stop serving as conduits for Russian propaganda ops?

  104. @AMinNC There are none so blind as those who will not see.

  105. @Lisachero: there's a whole political party that seems to be.

  106. @AMinNC "Do they go along with magnifying the discovered "dirt", no matter if it's true" Last time they checked that Hillary's emails were true. They came with a lot of forensic data included. This time around, the media will check veracity as well.

  107. Count the days until you see and hear Fox News reporting the "real facts" concerning Burisma, Hunter Biden and Joe as uncovered by Guiliani and Ukranian sources

  108. I'm now waiting for the statement from Donald "Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the files about Burisma-Biden corruption. I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press." That seems to be their modus operandi.

  109. This is not surprising. With Trump all roads lead to Putin. All of his crimes are worse than they appear on the surface. When he telegraphs his criminality, believe him.

  110. "Russia if you're listening..." History repeats itself. Let's hope the media does not disseminate the hacked information.

  111. Were the hackers searching for dirt on Joe Biden or his son? Isn’t it at least as likely that they were looking for ways to create files that would seem to implicate the Bidens in corrupt dealings?

  112. The idea that Russian operatives would have planted false evidence in different locations in Ukraine became a more obvious likelihood, once the July call by Trump to Zelensky became known, along with Rudy and his pals running around Ukraine with the Firtash pals, the two Shreks, claiming there was evidence to be found and he will be digging it up. Being tipped off where to find the fake evidence and miraculously "finding" it is not investigation. The hacking is more of this process - note it appears to have started during the time Rudy was being both active and vocal in Ukraine about all of the dirt. Unfortuately, Wm. Barr seems to have been doing the same, so watch to see if that new "dirt" gets rolled into one of his grand juries in time for an October surprise.

  113. This is important journalism and the kind of role the NYT needs to focus on in the months leading up to the next election. The timing just before the impeachment trial is also crucial. We need to know what Russia is plotting and doing and we also need to know if anyone from the Trump Administration or Trump himself has been aware of this hacking effort by the Russians. Has Trump discussed this with Putin? I'd really like to know how often he talks to Putin and what happens to the transcripts of those conversations. Or does someone use a back channel, like Giuliani, and then get back to Trump in private conversations?

  114. Yeah, seems to me likely that they're looking to deposit email messages rather than extract them.

  115. Putin's Russia is a failed state that is attempting to rise through the degradation of more successful nations. Trump is the super-weapon in their scheme. His re-election not only weakens us but erodes our alliances and thus weakens our allies as well. Democratic candidates need to put more emphasis on the need to thwart Putin's strategy by defeating Trump and his Republican co-conspirators.

  116. Hackers don’t even need to have planted erroneous information; millions of voters see trump as the source of all truth. Trump is right; it really ‘doesn’t matter’.

  117. More proof that Russians are in league with Republicans to defeat Democrats. What Russia needs to understand is these types of actions only alienate US citizens towards the Republicans. Whether working hand-in-hand, or not, their goals are the same. Both have the same objective. Both can be considered as working in concert. Republicans are working with a hostile State actor, an enemy of the US. Are Republicans not themselves, traitors? Would Republicans not do the same thing? Did they not sanction this action?

  118. The question is did anyone in the administration know if Trump made this request of his friends in Russia. One would think that the Democrats would be all over this by now but I haven't heard much from them on this subject. The timing of these hacks is suspect at best....

  119. We seem to have forgotten that Putin was a highly trained KGB intelligence agent for most of his life. He has stated that "once a KGB, always a KGB." He specializes in using dis-information for control over his targets. Putin is a master in playing to Trump's narcissism in order to control Trump's thoughts and actions. Putin will do what ever is necessary to keep his little boy puppet in the oval office. Yes Trump, Russia is listening...

  120. The Russians simply don't *care* at this point about being detected, knowing Trump and Republicans are more than willing to turn a blind eye and shift blame elsewhere. That they're still going after the Biden-Burisma connection could very well be a signal to Trump to keep that narrative going. There may be nothing found on the Bidens in the end, but a publicized hack coupled with manufactured information would be very useful to Trump...and the Russians.

  121. At some point the US intelligence needs to get to the bottom of the Trump/Putin connection. He's sold out the country and the Russians prop him up. This should be the biggest story and it's sitting in plain sight. I'd also like to know why the Republicans have all folded under Trump as well. It is simply a power grab or is there something more?

  122. Maybe there’s a sliver lining to all of this. If this Russia “investigation” comes up with nothing it will likely end this needless distraction once and for all.

  123. I think anyone here who has pointed out that hackers can salt a database with fake evidence has the right of it. This isn't a "discovery" hacking mission.

  124. I share the concerns of the authors of this article and commentators - the potential for malfeasance regarding digging for, planting, or generating false "dirt" on the Bidens. But let's also not forget that Russia is in hostilities with Ukraine. It is occupying portions of Ukraine and is seeking all the leverage it can in this conflict. Energy is a prime component of that leverage Russia has over Ukraine so hacking Burisma might have nothing to do with the Bidens and everything to do with the Russians seeking to weaken Ukraine directly.

  125. By not even making an effort to disguise their identity or well-known methods and techniques, the team dared us to do something about it. Sound familiar? The Russians know Trump has their backs and Trump knows that they and everyone else knows. What are we going to do about it?

  126. The learning curve is slow. Phishing is still too easy. Even the lazy ones seen to be able to do it. There should be a cultural change in many organization's to make phishing difficult.

  127. It cannot be allowed that the narrative that Hunter Biden received millions of dollars to buy influence with his father, and that the result desired was achieved must be quickly confirmed or denied for the sake of the Dems. If it is true, then that will destroy Joe Biden. Better now, so that a Progressive will get the nomination, rather than later, when Joe is the candidate. Biden has a tremendous amount of baggage, he is old, stumbles, and can barely get a 100 people to show up at his events. Confirmed corruption would be absolutely fatal if he were nominated.

  128. @drcmd: Why? Trump is the most corrupt person I have ever seen and his people and the Republicans love him.

  129. The Russians will forge some documents seeming to implicate Biden, provide them through a Wikileaks type organization, and the Republicans will gladly accept it as truth, pointing to their story of a hack. Remember the documents that supposedly came from the DNC? Were those verified or just assumed genuine? Assumed genuine, and Sanders supporters and Trump still refer to them.

  130. Hardly surprising given the trump - and trump fans - enthusiastic backing for previous hacking, and the really tepid attempts made to prevent a repeat. Trump openly said on TV that he would use info from a foreign power, so of course with an open invite like that it would be rude to refuse. Putin must be delighted with the pay off from helping to elect trump, and very keen to extend the lease on his property.

  131. If they are true, damning and come at the right moment, like Hillary's emails, then the Trump campaign will have to live with them...

  132. A private company has sensors on web servers around the globe and can detect phishing attempts? They decided to focus on Ukraine and found Russian hackers trying to get into Burisma's servers and email system in an attempt to hurt Joe Biden's election chances? This is all too fantastic to be believed without much more information. To begin with, who is paying Area 1? If phishing can be detected like this, why does law enforcement not have this capability? Why was this leaked to the NYT by an anonymous source? Can the NSA confirm this story?

  133. What would we do without the New York Times? It tell us what our government won't. US intelligence is being manipulated and censored by Trump for his personal advantage. Just how bad does it have to get before the American people become concerned enough to activate? Isn't it possible that the republican senators would love to get rid of the orange devil but fear the loss of the support of his fact-free, clueless base? The impeachment may be their chance to get out from under their nightmare. If there are witnesses and documents that prove his guilt, they really have no choice but to convict him and toss him out of the White House. I'm sure they have a backup candidate in mind who is not mentally ill and much easier to control. As far as the argument that even if Trump intended to break the law, he didn't reach his goal doesn't hold water. That's like if someone took a shot at Trump during one of his rallies and missed. Do you think that argument would stand a chance and the failed assassin would go free because he's a lousy shot?

  134. Why is it that wherever Trump goes, so goes Putin?

  135. Please, Editors, keep this story above the digital scroll/fold. Follow up, shake this tree. We rely on you! Thanks.

  136. It’s all over for Biden. Dems don’t have a chance unless you bow out. We must avoid a Hilary-like scandal at all costs. Joe, as a public leader, you and your son were wrong to allow such cozy simultaneous business and personal relationships in the first place. Did you do a favor for your son? Even I, a true blue, I don’t think it’s unlikely. It’s because we “regular people” understand that you, Trump, the big banks, etc., act in ways we can’t. The power our society gives you makes you feel invincible, and you use that power in big and small ways — all of you. NO. I don’t want your brand any more. Bring on the Bern!!

  137. @Sarah Conner "Did you do a favor for your son? " No. The context is readily available. Was it right for Hunter, a rich kid, to cash in on his name? No - that's the kind of thing the right usually celebrates - Biden could have asked him not to, but to suggest he used his influence is provably false.

  138. It was bad enough when some Bernie supporters were going around saying Clinton and Trump were similar in politics ... It was bad enough when of his more extreme supporters stated that one good thing about Trump wining was that it make the public more more willing to accept their idea of a “revolution” (who cares if some people & groups get persecuted in the process ...) But willingness (just like Trump) to go along with Russian election interference in an attempt to destroy an opponent, is frankly a step too far for me.

  139. Yes, Russia is getting stealthy alright. Only recently I have been getting a tracking cookie set on my computer from one "republer.com". Strangely, the location shown for this tracking entity is in St. Petersburg, Russia. And I'm a nobody who knows nothing. Sure, maybe it's a legitimate business in Russia. But it's the timing of its sudden appearance that is most disturbing. So Americans best be extra careful about what they do, and where they go, online in 2020. And they might consider using a program that clears these insidious ethereal stalker footprints from their computers every day.

  140. This is why Trump can't be beat. He has a whole spying network working for his benefit.

  141. Trump views talk of Russian interference as an attack on his legitimacy, you say? How about, instead, saying Trump hates talk of Russian interference because it reminds people that he stole the election? Further, do not refer to conspiracy theories in this context. Self-serving lies are not conspiracy theories. No matter how much you may want to believe that 2 plus 2 is 5, that does not make it a "theory." It is just a falsehood.

  142. Finding some criminal event associated with Biden, would still not get Trump off the hook. He coerced the Ukraine president to do something for money by holding back approved government funds. That is a criminal act. So even if the Russians were to find something related to Biden, it will not clear Trump, but it might make him even more guilty of having Russia do his dirty work along with Giuliani. I do not believe for a moment that the Biden's are guilty of anything, but that won't stop the Russians or Giuliani from dirt digging.

  143. Can anyone still doubt that Russia backs Trump? The only question is what Russia is getting in return.

  144. How can this possibly be true? Donald asked Putin if he'd done this kind of thing during the 2016 election, and Putin denied it. I even recall Donald kind-of-sort-of chiding Putin not to interfere in the future, and Putin smiled and agreed he'd not. The Republicans all seemed fully satisfied with this, and even accused skeptics of lying and conspiring to distract from Donald's otherwise perfect presidency. This "Area 1" outfit must be a Democratic hired gun! Or maybe the Deep State! A lot of people are saying so. And even if this article is reporting the truth...I'm sure it really doesn't matter. Just ask Donald.

  145. @ARNP - Comment of the day.

  146. Russia will try again, and Facebook will be misused. But, both now are the subject of intense focus. Trump has been cultivating Israel...Jerusalem, Golan, settlements...and the 2020 elections will be time to extract a quid pro quo. Israel is far better at black ops than Russia, and immune from criticism like no other foreign country.

  147. Wikileaks (aka the KGB) will soon publish something which claims to be information from Ukraine. Trump will then retweet the information, Fox will report on his tweets, right wing websites will propagate the lies, and we can then say the real election has started.

  148. Its so easy for Putin to achieve his goal, antagonistic chaos in the US political system. Successful or not, he can just order intelligence gathering based on headlines in the political sections of US News or based off of President Trump's tweets. All it takes is the thought of interference to get a part of the populous to consider an election compromised and stolen. It doesn't have to be successful, it doesn't even have to be real. All you need is this headline and read the other comments on this article to see its already working. DNC server hacks? It was phishing due to really poor IT practices, specifically around information security. Which is why having any official, not just Hillary Clinton, held accountable when they use personal emails, servers and devices for Government business. It just opens another avenue for a government official to unwittingly compromise sensitive information.

  149. No surprise here. Anyone familiar with the KGB mindset of Vladimir Putin knew this would occur because that's how they operate. Expect more of the same with our upcoming U.S. elections. There's too much at stake if Trump doesn't win.

  150. It seems we've finally reached the point where it would be a wise policy for email services provide a function that would allow the ability to strip links out of emails with a warning that they could be attempts at phishing. In many cases, such as this one, successful hacking depends on trusting email recipients to click through links with little thought of the potential consequences. Since it is unlikely that people will cease being duped, it becomes the responsibility of the email services at vulnerable companies and organizations to do something to protect, not only themselves, but the population that is at risk of these malicious attacks.

  151. A bigger story is the fact that this was leaked to the NYT but the gang of 8 weren't told. Is American Intelligence now a branch of the Trump campaign. Come on America, please put a stop to this dictatorial nonsense!

  152. The whole Republican Party is responsible for this not just trump. It is beyond disgusting that they put power over country. When will the enablers wake up and defend our democracy. My guess is they never will. If these people want to have Russia in elections they should go to Russia to live where they can vote for Putin. As always they will just laugh it off. Makes me sick.

  153. "The Trump Administration: All Roads lead to Russia".

  154. Looks like the GRU is trying to insert disinformation to retroactively validate Trump's phantasies.

  155. Sounds like there's something to find ...

  156. As soon as Hunter Biden took the job at Burisma, he was an irresistible target for security services, and not just Russian ones, given that his father's position - in charge of US policy re Ukraine - and this personal history as a cocaine user. That is a security risk for the USA Why Hunter Biden was allowed to take the job by the then administration baffles me to this day

  157. Well, well. When will we hear calls for a Special Council to get to the bottom of this collusion between Trump and Putin? We Americans need to be protected from “fake news” as we are unable to ascertain truth from falsehoods on our own. After all, it took only “13 Trolls” in a St. Petersburg basement to flip the election for Trump—we were duped and they did it on a shoestring budget during an election costing over a billion bucks! Rubes no more, we need the government to filter our news to prevent a country like Russia, with the GDP of Manhattan, to run roughshod over our Democracy! Let’s not let Twitter and Facebook become the stones that David used to topple Goliath!

  158. Beware! Russia's crafty hackers aren't looking for the Bidens' incriminating emails--there are none. They are planting them so their puppet in the White House can trot them out to his credulous base and Fox News as "proof" that Joe misused his power as VP to squelch the investigation into his son's corruption. And that oft-discredited trope will fly around the right wing echo chamber, and you'll hear it from Uncle Pat at your next family gathering and read it in Aunt Bertha's FB post.

  159. The saddest part is we have known that Russia interfered with last election, and Trump, GOP and Fox yelled "fake news", Barr tried to bury Mueller report, and now, as we could have predicted, it's happening all over again. Three years later, the GOP denied and did NOTHING to stop it, and in fact, encouraged it. And it's probably happening in other elections we don't know about yet, as there is also evidence they were involved in many states, etc. It's a complete travesty and not the America that I thought I knew, or want to live in.

  160. @Celeste With Facebook posts? Get real.

  161. Again—Crowdstrike. Again—no hard evidence revealed. Remember the Russiagate fiasco. Let’s not get fooled again. Until they show us the goods, no one should accept this story as truth.

  162. Watch your IT departments, various democratic candidates. And if any of you don't know how computers work (like candidate Clinton and her old Blackberry) start learning now. Biden was an easy target but he is not the defacto nominee.

  163. If the Russians are so desperate to throw their efforts against Biden, that's enough for me. Biden is now my favorite potential nominee.

  164. From 1947 to 2016 all we heard from so-called conservatives was Russia was infiltrating our security to the point where they accused innocent people - many who faced financial ruin and often suicide. Now we have unmitigated, clearly documented proof and they are "meh, no big deal. Never happened"...

  165. What's to keep Russia from falsifying damaging material on the Bidens vis-a-vis Barisma then issuing it to the Trump campaign or just Facebook? Once that happens, Trump and his loudspeakers will shout it to the heavens and 45%of the public will think it's real. I mean, this is really disturbing. What do we do?

  166. @Kelly Sutton Sadly, the Trumpites could suddenly reveal a newly discovered million-dollar a check made out to Biden on a mammoth tusk, and 40% of the voters would believe it.

  167. This is another compelling reason Nancy Pelosi ought to hold off sending the impeachment articles to the Senate, and instead ought to re-open the impeachment. I wonder who would gain the most from any "dirt" dug up by the Russian hackers? Of course it would the one who gained the most from them hacking the Democrat's server in 2016. It's beyond belief that anyone can still believe Trump isn't working with the Russians, and that begs the question: what is he giving them in return? The American people need to know if their President is a Russian puppet, and what he's done in their service.

  168. This information clearly is an indicator that the Biden's or someone close to the campaign already have one of their online accounts compromised. Be prepared for another drip drip leak to influence the election Again!

  169. Let me guess, Area 1 was paid for their services by Burisma. Secondly, we now know (with forensic evidence that will stand up in court) the DNC was not "hacked" but "leaked." In other words, it had to have been an "inside job," someone with access to a DNC database computer. Using "The-Russians-did-it" defense will not work for the Bidens this time around if they rely on Burisma for their evidence.

  170. @David Farrar Where in the world are your sources for this forensic evidence?

  171. @David Farrar We know no such thing. Where is this alleged evidence? I think you, or someone you're relying on, is just making stuff up, i.e. lying. If you can't put up & provide evidence...

  172. @David Farrar Evidence? Provide links.

  173. As others have said, we seem to have to rely on good journalism to learn about Russia's staggering interference in our elections. How's the NSA doing these days? Still eavesdropping on everyone? Yet no word at all from our super wire-tappers on Russian hackers, 'lobbyists' and stealthy donors to GOP campaigns. Same for CIA and FBI. What, exactly, do these vast spying agencies do all day while apparently ignoring obvious communications and financial dealings between the Trump gang and Russia's GRU? Still keeping a close eye on all those really dangerous outfits like Grandmothers Who Prefer Peace (GWPP) and Citizens Hoping For Cleaner Air ((CHFCA)? Keep up the good work, spy-folks.

  174. Biden can only defend his sons appointment to the board as an example of normalized nepotism, the kind of corruption that is legal and common amongst elite establishment figures (including Giuliani whose son has a position at the White House), but distasteful to the second class citizenry, the vast majority struggling in a rigged economic world, where good jobs are hard to come by. It’s not a convincing defense, not uplifting or inspirational. It’s grubby. It’s like Clintons defense of her Wall Street speaking fees.

  175. @Xoxarle Why does Joe Biden need to defend what his son & a Ukrainian company did? He only needs to defend what he did. He carried out the official policy of the Obama administration, a policy which was supported by the EU, the IMF and a number of Republican senators including Senator Ron Johnson, the chairman of the Senate Intelligence committee. Was the Ukrainian company hoping to get some sort of favors from their hire of young Biden? No doubt, but no evidence has been presented that they received any such favors. If the Russian hackers release information which purports to show corrupt favors we all need to look closely to see if they really have found actual evidence of malfeasance.

  176. It wasn't illegal for *candidate* Trump to benefit from Russian interference in the 2016 election. And until someone produces a signed agreement between the Trump campaign and the Russian government, there was no illegal conspiracy but merely collusion. But now, it is *President* Trump who is responsible for the integrity of our elections. Doing nothing in the face of election interference would be a dereliction of duty, and an impeachable offense. And for those of you who would argue President Obama "did nothing" to prevent election interference in 2016 that is simply not true. On the face of it this argument is beyond ridiculous. Why would President Obama risk breaking the law by willingly allowing election interference that bolstered his Party's opponent?

  177. Let me help move this astounding yet predictable story further. President Trump's official reaction to the news of Russian hacking of Burisma: "I asked President Putin if this happened. He told me they didn't do it. And I'll say this much, I don't see any reason why he'd lie."

  178. Among all the lessons to be drawn from this Burisma-Biden controversy is a reinforcement for one of the top tenets in American politics: Even seeming conflicts of interests can be toxic. Either Hunter Biden or Vice President Biden should have taken himself out of the Ukraine equation. And since the v.p. was the public servant, the actual duty fell to him. Given the amount of vitriolic lying swirling around D.C. these days, it has been too easy for Trump and the Russians to tie up these unrelated ends into a pretty bow for his all-believing Republican base. I'm surprised the "lazy" Russian invaders even bothered to hack the Burisma subsidiaries; fact is, it won't matter what they come up with. Remember pizzagate? Invention, to the whole rotten bunch, is the mother of elections.

  179. If this is not collusion between Trump and Putin I don't know what is. Even more evidence as to who is pleased to keep Trump around.

  180. Might there actually be exoneration forthcoming for Trump asking Zelensky for a closer look at Burisma and the Bidens during Hunter's tenure on the board making $83K per month?

  181. Answer... No.

  182. Um, you can't ask a foreign country to dig up dirt on your political opponent. It's a pretty simple concept. You would ask the Justice Department to investigate the Bidens for potential corruption. Get it?

  183. @VB Obama's Justice Dept was very eager to investigate all things Trump, going as far as using foreign sourced 'dirt' in the form of a shady dossier compiled by a paid foreign national...that was even used as the basis to launch a special counsel investigation, etc. What gives? The Biden's Burisma dealings warrant a closer look.

  184. It seems from this article that GRU hackers are picking up the ball dropped by the White House over the effort to change the narrative about the 2016 Russian election interference. Interestingly, “…Mr. Trump, who views talk of Russian interference as an attack on his legitimacy…” has been parroting a disinformation talking point put out by the Russian GRU; namely, “Russia has been working since the early days of Mr. Trump’s presidency to turn the focus away from its own election interference in 2016 by seeding conspiracy theories about Ukrainian meddling and Democratic complicity.” At minimum it is unseemly for Mr. Trump and his White House point people and the pundits from Fox as well as Mr. Giuliani, to parrot a talking point from the GRU. At most, the practice by friends of the GOP and Mr. Trump to parrot the Russian talking point is on its face evidence of a conspiracy. Sadly, the articles of impeachment do not address the Russian / Team Trump collusion; I think Speaker Pelosi has erred; however, since the Impeachment Trial might start next week and presumably be over soon thereafter, there will be plenty of time left in 2020 for the House to open a new investigation into the Russian hold on Mr. Trump.

  185. This article belong front and center in the NYT, not buried in the Politics section. After all, it gives information that is vital to our ability to vote without the influence of Russian interests. It also shows that President Trump continues to be favored by Russian interests, while raising the question of why Republicans like Mitch McConnell refuse to back legislation that would secure our voting against foreign influence, and why he and other Republicans support a president, who is supported by our foreign adversary, Russia.

  186. Mr. Mueller warned us that the Russian attempts to destroy our votes is on-going. I understand that the information about the current Russian attack on the Burisma server was not disclosed to lawmakers by our own national security officials, and I would like to know why that is. I am also concerned by the possibility, confirmed by one of the authors of this piece, that Russia could use their hacking to plant false stories about their enemies. Most of all, I am concerned that Trump, the beneficiary of Russian hacking in 2016 does NOTHING to protect our vote, nor do any of his Republican supporters.

  187. Oh no, are we on the precipice of another droning Mueller investigation with the accompanying media howls?

  188. The Meuller investigation which found more than a dozen criminals abroad and in the states, found lots of corruption, and didn’t cost the tax payers a dime because of fines. As opposed to the years of investigations into Hillary Clinton whiling cost the tax payers millions and didn’t find anything illegal.