Reddit Uncovers Russian-Linked Campaign To Leak Trade Documents From U.K.

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Reddit has uncovered what it said appears to be a Russian-linked campaign to leak documents from the U.K., the website revealed on Friday.

In an announcement to the official Reddit Security page, the site noted that it was made aware of a post from October claiming to reveal details about negotiations toward a deal with the United States. The report linked to a.zip file with a trove of documents claiming to reveal sensitive information related to the discussions. The post itself garnered more than 1,200 upvotes and more than 300 comments.

In its announcement on Friday evening, Reddit noted that after investigating the account that made the post and shared the documents, it found a connection to a campaign originating in Russia. The post said it appeared to be connected to a similar initiative backed by the country that targeted Facebook earlier in the year.

“Earlier this year Facebook discovered a Russian campaign on its platform, which was further analyzed by the Atlantic Council and dubbed ‘Secondary Infektion.’ Suspect accounts on Reddit were recently reported to us, along with indicators from law enforcement, and we were able to confirm that they did indeed show a pattern of coordination,” the announcement read. “We were then able to use these accounts to identify additional suspect accounts that were part of the campaign on Reddit. This group provides us with important attribution for the recent posting of the leaked UK documents, as well as insights into how adversaries are adapting their tactics.”

This is not the first time that Russian-linked campaigns have targeted Reddit. Back in April 2018, the site announced that it had identified close to 1,000 accounts linked to the country’s Internet Research Agency, the group accused of manipulating social media and creating fake posts to meddle in the 2016 presidential election.

As The Inquisitr reported, Reddit was often fertile ground for Russian-linked conspiracy theories. After Robert Mueller announced a series of indictments against Russian nationals, The New York Times reported that one of the major planks of the interference came through a fraudulent Twitter account claiming to represent the Republican Party of Tennessee. The account, known as @TEN_GOP, frequently garnered viral attention by sharing conspiracy theories aimed at Hillary Clinton.

The @TEN_GOP found popularity on some of the platform’s far-right subreddits, including the Donald Trump-supporting The_Donald. The Twitter account was shared on The_Donald hundreds of times, with some of the posts gaining thousands of user votes.

After the current post connected to the Russia-linked campaign, Reddit announced that it had banned 61 accounts and one subreddit dedicated to the leaked documents.