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Researchers have uncovered a widespread influence campaign that aims to discredit the Northern Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), an intergovernmental military alliance between 30 North American and European countries. According to new research from FireEye, the campaign has been ongoing since at least March 2017. The influence campaign does not merely spread false news content on social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, as other disinformation campaigns have done. Instead, it goes a step further. The attackers reportedly compromised news website content management systems (CMS) to manipulate content, spreading reports of falsified correspondence from military officials, fake quotes from political figures and more. The operations primarily targeted audiences in Lithuania, Latvia, and Poland, which are all members of NATO. Researchers assess with “moderate confidence” that the operations are aligned with Russian security interests – However, they said that at this time they are not attributing the campaign to a specific actor or group of actors. “We have dubbed this campaign ‘Ghostwriter,’ based on its use of inauthentic personas posing as locals, journalists, and analysts within the target countries to post articles and op-eds referencing the fabrications as source material to a core set of third-party websites that publish user-generated content,” according to FireEye researchers in a Thursday analysis. Researchers said that they uncovered a slew of false…

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