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Photo: Mikhail Svetlov / Getty Images

The hacker that stole Democratic National Committee emails, Guccifer 2.0, was "an officer of Russia's military intelligence directorate (GRU)," according to the Daily Beast.

Why it matters: Special counsel Robert Mueller never explicitly implicated Russian President Vladimir Putin in his investigation. Connecting Guccifer to "Russia's largest foreign intelligence agency" would do exactly that.

The details: ThreatConnect, a cyber security firm, found that Guccifer was using "an anonymizing service called Elite VPN," which is headquartered in Russia. Per the Daily Beast, Guccifer at one pointed "failed to activate the VPN client before logging on" to his emails, leaving an IP address based in Moscow. Government investigators traced the IP address to "a particular GRU officer."

  • It was originally believed that Guccifer was a lone actor.
  • The hacker "persona" of Guccifer was "handed off to a more experienced GRU officer" at some point.

Go deeper

In photos: D.C. and U.S. states on alert for pre-inauguration violence

National Guard troops stand behind security fencing with the dome of the U.S. Capitol Building behind them, on Jan. 16. Photo: Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Security has been stepped up in Washington, D.C., and state capitols across the U.S. as authorities brace for potential violence this weekend.

Driving the news: Following the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol by some supporters of President Trump, the FBI has said there could be armed protests in D.C. and in all 50 state capitols in the run-up to President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration Wednesday.

11 hours ago - Politics & Policy

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Rep. Lou Correa tests positive for COVID-19

Lou Correa. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Rep. Lou Correa (D-Calif.) announced on Saturday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Correa is the latest Democratic lawmaker to share his positive test results after last week's deadly Capitol riot. Correa did not shelter in the designated safe zone with his congressional colleagues during the siege, per a spokesperson, instead staying outside to help Capitol Police.