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Government knows DNC hacker was Russian intel officer: report

U.S. investigators have reportedly discovered that "Guccifer 2.0," the hacker who claimed credit for a breach of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) during the 2016 presidential race, revealed himself as a Russian intelligence operative.

The Daily Beast reports that U.S. investigators identified the hacker as a Moscow-based Russian intelligence operative after the hacker failed to activate a virtual private networking (VPN) service meant to obscure the operative's location before logging on.

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The result was the operative's Moscow IP address being caught in the logs of a U.S. social media company, allowing U.S. investigators to track the individual.

Special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE, who is leading the investigation into Russian election meddling, has taken over the probe into Guccifer, according to The Daily Beast, which reported that he added FBI agents to his team who previously worked to track the hacker.

U.S. intelligence agencies previously stated in January 2017 that they had "high confidence" that "Russian military intelligence (General Staff Main Intelligence Directorate or GRU) used the Guccifer 2.0 persona and DCLeaks.com to release US victim data.”

Earlier this year, Mueller indicted 13 Russian nationals allegedly involved in the country's Internet Research Agency, a St. Petersburg-based "troll farm" that U.S. investigators say used stolen U.S. identities to spread false or divisive information to voters in swing states.

Guccifer was known to be in brief contact with informal Trump adviser Roger StoneRoger Jason StoneMueller assembles team of cooperators in Russian probe Mueller's team asking Manafort about Roger Stone: report Collusion judgment looms for key Senate panel MORE, who wrote in 2016 that he believed the hacker's claims that he was not in contact with Russia.

“I have some news for Hillary and Democrats—I think I’ve got the real culprit,” he wrote. “It doesn’t seem to be the Russians that hacked the DNC, but instead a hacker who goes by the name of Guccifer 2.0.”