The FBI warned the Clinton campaign that it was a target of a cyberattack last March, just weeks before the Democratic National Committee discovered it had been penetrated by hackers it now believes were working for Russian intelligence, two sources who have been briefed on the matter told Yahoo News.
In a meeting with senior officials at the campaign’s Brooklyn headquarters, FBI agents laid out concerns that cyberhackers had used so-called spear-phishing emails as part of an attempt to penetrate the campaign’s computers, the sources said. One of the sources said agents conducting a national security investigation asked the Clinton campaign to turn over internal computer logs as well as the personal email addresses of senior campaign officials. But the campaign, through its lawyers, declined to provide the data, deciding that the FBI’s request for sensitive personal and campaign information data was too broad and intrusive, the source said.
The Brooklyn warning also could raise new questions about why the campaign and the DNC didn’t take the matter more seriously. It came just four months after the DNC had also been contacted by FBI agents alerting its information technology specialists about a cyberattack on its computers, the sources told Yahoo News. As with the warning to the Clinton campaign, the FBI initially provided no details to the DNC.
The confirmation that the campaign was warned by the FBI as early as March of an attempted breach of its computers is a further indication that the scope of the possible Russian attack may have been far wider and extensive than the official DNC accounts.
The Democrat party was anxious to label Donald Trump a traitor for joking that perhaps the Russians would know where Hillary’s lost 30,000 emails were rather than recognizing the serious nature of cyberhacking of Clinton and the DNC.
We keep hearing that Clinton is capable, experienced, and smart, but it is hard to believe when she keeps making rookie mistakes and opening up the trove of secrets to the Russians, the Chinese, and other hackers who may wish to do us harm. No word yet about hacked servers in the Trump campaign or the Republican National Committee.