Monday, May 08, 2017

France Defeats Putin-Farage-Trump-Le Pen Axis of Evil

[Le Pen] had been the only French political leader to back Trump in his bid for the White House. ["Le Pen said she would vote for Republican candidate Donald Trump"...rather than Democrat Hillary Clinton, if she was American. "Everything but Hillary Clinton! It embodies all that the United States has been able to construct and export harmful in the world in terms of economic model, of international choices."[Nice translation, Google. html # kSFJmKb71LiPGISo.99]] She has also made no secret of her admiration for Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin.
“A new world has emerged in these past years,” she said. “It’s the world of Vladimir Putin, it’s the world of Donald Trump in the US..."

Another terrorist attack in Paris. The people of France will not take much more of this. Will have a big effect on presidential election!

Then he added in an interview with the Associated Press: “She's the strongest on borders, and she's the strongest on what's been going on in France. Whoever is the toughest on radical Islamic terrorism, and whoever is the toughest at the borders will do well in the election.”

[The Macron] campaign reportedly fell victim to cyber attacks by the same group of hackers that targeted former Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton’s campaign in last year’s U.S. elections. That group was comprised of infamous hackers like STRONTIUM, Apt28 and Pawn Storm, which most experts throughout the intelligence community agree work—at least in part—for the Russian government.
[Macron] cruised to victory Sunday, garnering...[66.1%] of the total votes against Le Pen...And yet the world watched the election on the edge of their seats, following a last-minute “massive” hacking attack against Macron...

Both Macron and France were well-prepared for any sort of last-minute shakeup that had the promise of throwing a historic election on its head, however. [Macron] and his campaign refused to take such attacks lying down, after first reporting several of its members were targeted in online phishing incidents weeks before Le Pen visited Russia and met with Putin.

Macron's En Marche! campaign unleashed an operation attacking those hackers and their ability to gain accurate log-in information. "Every week we send to the team screen captures of all the phishing addresses we have found during the week … we also do counteroffensive against them," Mounir Mahjoubi, Macron's head of digital, told the Daily Beast in the final weeks of the election.

When staff members received fake emails leading them to log-in pages hackers could use to record keystrokes, Macron’s digital team flooded those landing pages with fake passwords and other data, confusing the hackers and making it virtually impossible to gain access to the campaign’s emails.

"You can flood these addresses with multiple passwords and log-ins, true ones, false ones, so the people behind them use up a lot of time trying to figure them out," Mahjoubi said.
Eventually, the hacking group was successful in its attempt to unleash an assault on Macron’s campaign. But it was too late to affect the vote.

[Because French election laws require a 24-hour blackout period. I don't quite understand this. Did the Macron team just successfully delay the attack? Is that the lesson?]

"The only way to be ready is to train the people," Mahjoubi said. "Because what happened during the Hillary Clinton campaign is that one man, the most powerful, [campaign chairman] John Podesta, logged on to his [fake] page."
[Yeah, nice work, Podesta.]