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German Spies "Alarmed" Over Threat To Election From Fake News, Russians


Russian president Vladimir Putin (left), German chancellor Angela Merkel.

German intelligence agencies have warned that a combination of fake news and Russian interference through hacking and misinformation could disrupt next year’s German federal elections.

Credit: Kevin Lamarque and Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters

German intelligence agencies have warned that a combination of fake news and Russian interference through hacking and misinformation could disrupt next year’s federal elections in a way that mirrors what happened during the US presidential contest, an official told BuzzFeed News.

The concerns add to those expressed by top US, EU, and NATO officials about Russia’s actions in Germany — and across the continent — in what they say is an attempt to destabilise chancellor Angela Merkel at home and abroad.

A German intelligence official told BuzzFeed News the agency could not rule out a repeat of the type of interference that followed the hack on the Democratic National Committee’s systems in the US. German officials have no idea how much and what kind of information was stolen during a hack on the German parliament’s network last year.

They said the group behind the hack, Sofacy/APT 28, is “steered by Russia”. The same group, which is also known as Fancy Bear, allegedly hacked the DNC in the US. Hackers, also suspected to have Russian connections, have also targeted Germany’s political parties, including Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU). Officials said they were concerned networks of government ministries were vulnerable to attacks.

 

From BuzzFeed News
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