(CNN)Documents unsealed this week lend credence to a theory about Russian election meddling that was first put forward in the Trump-Russia dossier, however they do not corroborate the more explosive claims that the Trump campaign colluded with the Kremlin in the 2016 campaign.
A report from a retired agent who worked for the FBI’s cyber division, submitted as expert testimony in a civil lawsuit, presented new evidence about how Russian intelligence might have exploited a private web hosting company when it fooled top Democratic targets into giving up their passwords. The fruits of those hacks formed the basis of the WikiLeaks email dumps that roiled the race.
The controversial dossier had accused Russian hackers of using those companies, Webzilla and its parent company XBT, as part of their scheme to meddle in the presidential election. The memos, written by a retired British spy, Christopher Steele, also claimed that Russian entrepreneur Aleksej Gubarev assisted the cyberattacks “under duress” from Russian intelligence.