A Russian hacker who says he was ordered by the Kremlin to crack into the Democratic National Committee’s servers in the summer of 2016 now claims to have proof.
Konstantin Kozlovsky, who is currently in jail for stealing millions from Russian banks, has previously claimed that his attacks on the DNC were ordered by the FSB, a Russian intelligence agency known to recruit young hackers to do its digital dirty work.
In an interview made public this week, Kozlovsky now says there’s proof he accessed in the DNC servers. The hacker told RAIN TV, an independent outlet in Moscow, that he didn’t trust his contacts at the FSB and feared they would turn on him. So he left behind proof he was doing the agency’s bidding in the form of a computer file containing his passport number, among other things.
If Kozlovsky’s digital breadcrumb could be found, it would give more weight to his claim that the FSB directed the attack.
But proving his story could be a challenge, McClatchy reports:
That allegation is difficult to prove, partly because of the limited universe of people who have seen the details of the hack. The DNC initially did not share information with the FBI, instead hiring a tech firm called CrowdStrike, run by a former FBI cyber leader. That company has said it discovered the Russian hand in the hacking, but had no immediate comment on the claim by Kozlovsky that he planted an identifier.
If the file is found, though, it would be a big deal. Both Vladimir Putin and President Trump have consistently claimed that the Kremlin had nothing to do with the DNC attacks. Evidence backing up Kozlovsky’s claim would come close to proving otherwise.