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The FBI Was Reportedly Tracking Potential Russian ‘Fake News’ on Election Day

CNN reports this afternoon that the FBI was, in real time, tracking what was believed to be Russian disinformation on election day last year.

The report from Shimon Prokupecz, Pamela Brown, and Evan Perez details just how seriously the FBI was taking this “fake news”:

On Election Day, dozens of agents and analysts huddled at a command center arrayed with large monitoring screens at the FBI headquarters in Washington watching for security threats, according to multiple sources.

That included analysts monitoring cyber threats, after months of mounting Russian intrusions targeting every part of the US political system, from political parties to policy think-tanks to state election systems…

FBI analysts had identified social media user accounts behind stories, some based overseas, and the suspicion was that at least some were part of a Russian disinformation campaign, according to two sources familiar with the investigation.

There were apparently some concerns about this, with one person briefed on the investigation saying, “We were right on the edge of Constitutional legality. We were monitoring news.”

One official who worked in the Obama White House at the time told CNN that they said, in response to others exchanging congratulations about “an election day that was completed without disruptions of the vote,” “Are you kidding? What they did worked!”

President Trump last night continued to say that “the Russia story is a total fabrication.”

You can watch CNN’s on-air report above.

[image via screengrab]

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Follow Josh Feldman on Twitter: @feldmaniac

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