Russian President Vladimir Putin listens to a question during his annual news conference in Moscow, Russia, Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017. (Alexei Nikolsky, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)
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From Donald Trump's election to Brexit and the Catalan crisis, accusations that the Kremlin is meddling in Western domestic affairs have heightened fears over Russian hackers, trolls and state-controlled media. While the first accusations against Moscow came following a 2016 hack attack on the U.S. Democratic Party's servers, they rapidly multiplied after Trump's election, revealing a whole range of tools used by the Kremlin to serve its interests.Fears initially centered on mysterious Russian hackers who supposedly worked for Moscow's security services as part of a cyberwar but then shifted to a flood of online articles and social media posts aiming to explain Moscow's position and play up the failings of Western democracies. Russian hackers, the Kremlin's shadiest instruments, have been accused of targeting the U.S. Democratic Party, the U.S. National Security Agency, the party of France's Emmanuel Macron and the World Anti-Doping Agency.
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