The Russia-linked email addresses that tried to breach Hillary Clinton’s private email inbox during her time as Secretary of State also tried to break into the email accounts of Syrian government officials.
Clinton received five emails from four different email addresses on the morning of August 3, 2011, sending her fake New York City speeding tickets that if opened would have allowed hackers to get into her inbox.
Those very same email addresses also sent their “phishing” scheme to multiple officials of Bashar al-Assad’s Syrian government on the very same morning that Clinton received them.
Here are the email addresses that went after Clinton:
email@example.com sent one on August 3, 2011 1:17 AM
firstname.lastname@example.org sent one on August 3, 2011 3:05 AM
email@example.com sent one on August 3, 2011 1:44 AM
firstname.lastname@example.org sent one on August 3, 2011 2:43 AM
email@example.com sent one on August 3, 2011 5:26 AM
Records reveal, courtesy of Wikileaks, that three of those email addresses also went after top Syrian officials, including on that same morning.
The email address firstname.lastname@example.org got one from email@example.com on August 3, 2011.
The email address m.karrat@Bcs.gov.sy got one from firstname.lastname@example.org on August 3, 2011.
The email address email@example.com got one from firstname.lastname@example.org on August 3, 2011.
The email address email@example.com got one from firstname.lastname@example.org on August 4, 2011.
Though the phishing scheme infected the inboxes of up to several thousand people that month, prompting New York City officials to put out a warning to residents about the scheme, the Syrian government is far away from New York City. It is possible, according to computer experts, that victimized email accounts could have been extracted from the email address book of people who opened the attachment on the phony emails.
The perpetrator of the scheme has not been identified, and no evidence has been offered to prove that the scheme did not specifically target certain individuals or government entities. Though at least one of the scheme’s “harvesting” computers, which picks up the information from the phishing attempts, was based in Russia, the email addresses in question are linked to numerous other countries including Turkey, the Netherlands, and the United States.