US military hackers have penetrated Russia’s political heart and its critical infrastructure and are ready to cause damage in case Moscow attempts to disrupt the upcoming presidential election in America, a report says.
The Pentagon has been able to break into Russia’s electric grid, telecommunications networks and the Kremlin’s command systems, making them vulnerable for the final attack, the NBC News reported Friday, citing senior intelligence officials and documents with top secret classification.
According to one official, the US hackers have placed specially designed malware on Russian networks to take them down when needed.
Moscow and Washington have long been at odds over claims by American intelligence officials about what they refer to as an attempt by the Kremlin to disrupt the November 8 presidential vote.
The allegations against Russia first came a few months ago, when the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks released thousands of emails belonging to the Democratic National Committee (DNC).
The hacked emails were provided to WikiLeaks via a hacker who goes by the name “Guccifer 2.0” and is deemed Russian by American intelligence agencies.
The hackings prompted warnings from the campaign of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton against what the former first lady and her aides called foreign interference in favor of Clinton’s Republican rival Donald Trump.
On Friday, Guccifer 2.0 posted a tweet, warning the White House that they would monitor the US election cycle “from inside the system.”
While the Clinton campaign constantly accuses Moscow of trying to get Trump elected, the New York businessman keeps claiming that the whole election is “rigged” against him and in Clinton’s favor.
The Kremlin has constantly denied the American accusations, with Russian President Vladimir Putin saying that Russia “on a state level has never done this.”
“Don’t we know that official bodies of the United States are spying and eavesdropping on everyone?” Putin told reporters in late October.
It has been reported that the FBI spent most of the summer verifying claims by the Clinton campaign that Trump was linked to Putin, and Moscow was trying to influence the November 8 vote in his favor.
However, the bureau failed to find any indications of the alleged ties after scrutinizing advisers close to Trump and investigating the real estate mogul’s financial ties and even his emails, theNew York Times reported this week.