Hackers Planted Trump Smears—and Pro-Iran Trolls Spread Them


    Photo Illustration by Kelly Caminero/The Daily Beast/Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/GettyPresident Trump dying of coronavirus and handing over power to Mike Pence. Black Lives Matter protesters surrounding the Clintons’ house in New York and firing gunshots. These are a few of the fake scandals that an Israeli news outlet’s hacked Twitter account tried to fool readers into believing for a few brief moments earlier this month. Twitter says the trolls amplifying them are linked to Iran.The incident ended as quickly as it began and the outlet, Israel Hayom, regained control of its account. But the hack wasn’t an isolated event. Over the past year, hackers have broken into a number of news organizations’ Twitter accounts and at least one website to plant fake stories. A new investigation by The Daily Beast and Mandiant Threat Intelligence suggests that hackers in Iran may be behind the incidents.Twitter accounts used to amplify the fake Israel Hayom stories have been used to hype bogus articles planted by hackers in an Orthodox Jewish news website and a Bahraini news outlet’s Twitter account. The Iranian-linked accounts also garnered attention for a fake account impersonating one of America’s best-known doctors, Zeke Emanuel.Read more at The Daily Beast.


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