Putin is worried he's about to lose his Puppet:
“We are in possession of all your information You are currently registered as a Democrat and we know this because we have gained access into the entire voting infrastructure. You will vote for Trump on Election Day or we will come after you. Change your party affiliation to Republican to let us know you received our message and will comply. We will know which candidate you voted for. I would take this seriously if I were you.”
Authorities are classifying this as a "Scam," but it's a hell of a lot more sinister than some identity theft effort. Not only does it seek to intimidate voters into choosing Trump, it also seeks to undermine faith and trust in our entire voting system. It doesn't matter how clumsy the effort is, and it should not be downplayed:
Mayor Lauren Poe of Gainesville said in an interview that the emails were “a very brutish way of trying to intimidate people from going to the polls,” but that none of the voters he had talked to seemed to have been fooled.
“Most people who had gotten it realized that it was a scam and that there was really no way people were going to find out who you vote for,” Mr. Poe said. “So now I think people are just a little annoyed by it, or think it’s kind of comical how ham-fisted it was — but don’t seem very panicked.”
Anecdotal evidence might be comforting, but it doesn't take into consideration those who might be genuinely afraid to report it. Consider how many tens of thousands latch on to conspiracy theories like QAnon or anti-vaxxer nonsense, and they get that just from cruising message boards. An e-mail directed at an individual personally is stark evidence of vulnerability, and it should be taken very seriously.
Definitely related: The FBI just indicted several Russian GRU hackers for deploying malware against foreign adversaries:
The charges were announced by Assistant Attorney General John C. Demers; FBI Deputy Director David Bowdich; U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania Scott W. Brady; and Special Agents in Charge of the FBI’s Atlanta, Oklahoma City, and Pittsburgh Field Offices, J.C. “Chris” Hacker, Melissa R. Godbold, and Michael A. Christman, respectively.
“No country has weaponized its cyber capabilities as maliciously or irresponsibly as Russia, wantonly causing unprecedented damage to pursue small tactical advantages and to satisfy fits of spite,” said Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers. “Today the department has charged these Russian officers with conducting the most disruptive and destructive series of computer attacks ever attributed to a single group, including by unleashing the NotPetya malware. No nation will recapture greatness while behaving in this way.”
“The FBI has repeatedly warned that Russia is a highly capable cyber adversary, and the information revealed in this indictment illustrates how pervasive and destructive Russia’s cyber activities truly are,” said FBI Deputy Director David Bowdich. “But this indictment also highlights the FBI’s capabilities. We have the tools to investigate these malicious malware attacks, identify the perpetrators, and then impose risks and consequences on them. As demonstrated today, we will relentlessly pursue those who threaten the United States and its citizens.”
“For more than two years we have worked tirelessly to expose these Russian GRU Officers who engaged in a global campaign of hacking, disruption and destabilization, representing the most destructive and costly cyber-attacks in history,” said U.S. Attorney Scott W. Brady for the Western District of Pennsylvania. “The crimes committed by Russian government officials were against real victims who suffered real harm. We have an obligation to hold accountable those who commit crimes – no matter where they reside and no matter for whom they work – in order to seek justice on behalf of these victims.”
Trump's refusal to confront Vladimir Putin directly over cyber attacks like this, just like his refusal to defend American soldiers against Russian bounties, is just one more reason he can't be allowed to continue as Commander-In-Chief. Whether he''s incapable of grasping the threat, or he simply doesn't care, is beside the point. His disqualification is the same either way.