Thursday October 22, 2020
The US secret service is certain: Russia and Iran have tapped data from US voters in order to provide them with misinformation and intimidate them. This is how they wanted to “create confusion” and “sow chaos”.
According to intelligence, Russia and Iran have tapped data from US voters. Both states wanted to use this to send false information to registered voters and thus influence the presidential election on November 3rd. The US intelligence coordinator John Ratcliffe said at a press conference in Washington. The goal of this electoral interference is to “create confusion, sow chaos and undermine confidence in American democracy”.
According to Ratcliffe, Iranian authorities have already sent “fake” emails to intimidate US voters, incite social unrest and “harm” President Donald Trump. Iran had also distributed a video that was intended to induce people to send in wrong postal votes, also from outside the USA.
Trump has repeatedly claimed in recent months that postal voting is extremely susceptible to fraud – although experts disagree with him. Because of the corona pandemic, a very high number of postal voters is expected in the presidential election.
Information about covert foreign interference in this year’s US election campaign had been repeated over the past few months. According to the findings of the US secret services, Russia intervened massively in the 2016 presidential election – in favor of Trump and to the detriment of his inferior rival Hillary Clinton. According to the secret services, this alleged interference took place at the time, among other things, through hacker attacks and Internet campaigns under false identities.
Threatening emails to Democrat members
Shortly before Ratcliffe’s press conference, threatening emails to voters registered as members of the Democratic Party caused a stir. According to media reports, voters in the states of Alaska, Arizona, Florida and Pennsylvania received such e-mails, in which they were threatened to vote for Trump. The sender was an address with the name of the right-wing radical group Proud Boys. However, she denied being behind the emails.
“We have all of your information,” says the emails whose addressees are named. “You are currently registered as a Democrat, and we know this because we have been given access to the entire election infrastructure. You will vote for Trump on election day or we will get you.” Much voter data is publicly available in the US.
Less than two weeks before the election, Trump is in polls behind his challenger Joe Biden from the opposition Democrats, in some cases very clearly. On Thursday evening, the two rivals will face each other in their second and last television duel before the election.