By: Jillian Stella, October 19, 2017 (08:38 AM)

America: Russia’s Next Target for Annexation?

I’m just going to come out and say it.

I am not certain that Russia hacked our election – but they sure did hack just about everything else.

They accomplished so through Kaspersky Anti-Virus, NSA hacks, Troll Farms and Pokestops…

Yes, I said Pokestops.

And yes, they perpetrated the attacks within the comfort of their own homes and computer screens.

Two posts back, we discussed the suspicion and ban of Kaspersky Anti-Virus within the U.S. government.

Since then, businesses have been pulling Kaspersky from their shelves.

And since then, it was confirmed that the NSA was indeed hacked through their use of Kaspersky’s antivirus in which U.S. cybersecurity strategies were stolen by Russia.

Hate to say I told you so – but I told you so.

Abnormally enough, the attack occurred in 2015, was discovered by the NSA in 2016 and was not disclosed of its execution through Russia’s Kaspersky software until recently, in 2017.

In addition to hacking the NSA, a Russian group known as the Internet Research Agency created troll farms which targeted Facebook.

The person behind the troll factory? Putin’s chef.

Vladimir Putin’s chef was in charge of configuring troll farms across our nation’s network.

Such troll farms included advertisements supporting the Second Amendment and elaborated on the dangers illegal immigrants carry to the state of America.

But, they didn’t stop there.

Attempting to stir up controversy and heighten tensions with the Black Lives Matter movement, the Russian group also set up ads targeting the Ferguson and Baltimore areas on Facebook.

They even went as far as to create Black Lives Matter merchandise and sold t-shirts online.

Over $100,000 worth of advertisements were purchased by the Russian research group from June of 2015 to May of 2017 with an intention to divide our nation socially and politically.

And I think we all can agree that division was indefinitely felt.

Evidently, troll farms weren’t enough for the crooks being that they set up their own Pokestops in the states – when the Pokémon Go app was thriving, of course.

But Pokestops weren’t placed just anywhere.

Thousands of users were brought to the exact locations in Ferguson and Baltimore of which the police brutality occurred to battle for their Pokémon.

The Russian group asked users to name their Pokémon after the victims and in turn, rewarded the Pokestop winner with an Amazon gift card.

Nothing like raising awareness for police violence through a children’s game (don’t lie, you played it too).

Nevertheless, BIG kudos to Israeli intelligence for detecting that Russia was spying on our nation back in 2015 – by spying on Russia’s nation.

Since deceptively, we didn’t have the resources or brain power to figure it out ourselves.

Jillian Stella

Jillian Stella is a recent graduate from the University at Albany where she obtained a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Digital Forensics. Jillian is a Security Analyst and Researcher at Cursive Security where she works with and performs assessment and response services for clients. She is currently conducting research in the area of cyber threat intelligence.

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