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Macron’s French presidential campaign has been hacked less than 48 hours before the election

What we know and what we don’t about the hack, which could sway the election in favor of far-right candidate Marine LePen.

Presidential Candidate Emmanuel Macron Holds A Rally Meeting At Paris Event Center Photo by Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images

A new hacking scandal is shaking up what’s considered to be one of the most important presidential elections in the history of France less than 48 hours before voters are supposed to cast their ballots.

Leading French Presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron’s campaign said Friday evening that it was the victim of a massive email hack that dumped as much as 9 gigabytes of data on a document sharing website called Pastebin by an anonymous user under the name “Emleaks.”

Macron’s campaign slammed the hack as an attempt to sway the election in favor of his far-right rival Marine LePen, who is trailing by as much as 20 points in polls.

The Macron campaign further claims that fake information has been mixed in with actually hacked documents “in order to sow doubt and misinformation.”

The leaked documents were disseminated on 4chan, an online forum that’s popular with the far-right and spread quickly on Twitter, in large thanks to WikiLeaks promoting the document dump.

Macron’s campaign said some of the leaders of its party had their emails hacked “several weeks ago.”

Last month, the cybersecurity firm Trend Micro shared that the Macron campaign appeared to be the target of the Russian government linked hacking group Fancy Bear (also known as APT 28). This is the same group of Russian linked hackers that investigators found to be behind the hacking of the Democratic National Committee in the run up to the U.S. Presidential election.

Security researchers found evidence that the hacking group had set up decoy email phishing accounts that impersonate the En March domain names, thereby tricking campaign officals to open emails that contain malware.

It’s still unclear what information that has been leaked is authentic and what information is faked, which could take weeks to investigate. Nor is it clear what the motives of the hackers are or if the document dump will sway French voters.


This article originally appeared on Recode.net.

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