The investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election continue to reveal a full-scale assault on American democracy. From sophisticated social media efforts and traditional information operations to attempted hacks of voter rolls and state electoral systems, the Russians engaged in a campaign to undermine American democracy. This is not the only time they have engaged in such activity. In countries like the Netherlands, Ukraine and France, the Russians have used influence operations to affect political campaigns and candidates, and to attack perceived opponents of Vladimir Putin’s Russia and support those more sympathetic to Russian interests. The Russians have decided to do this to achieve three complementary goals. They want to undermine faith and confidence in democracy and its institutions from within; exacerbate social and political divisions advantageous to Russian interests; and obfuscate or confuse the truth and amplify narratives that align with Russian interests, even when patently false.
These types of attacks certainly reveal the modern dangers and vulnerabilities to open, democratic processes, systems and data. More fundamentally, they reveal a new form of combined, asymmetric influence and cyber-attacks that target democratic states and institutions.
The United States and its democratic allies must treat these campaigns as strategic threats to democracy. They must also realize that the Russian playbook can be copied and deployed by other state and non-state actors who want to influence democratic societies.
Full Article: The Cyber Attacks on Democracy – InsideSources.