Russian meddling in presidential elections has been a hot topic in the United States for the past year, but for much of the world, it’s old news.
USA Today reports that new analysis from the non-profit group Alliance for Securing Democracy has found that Russia has interfered in 27 countries’ elections since 2004 by using techniques ranging from hacking attacks to massive disinformation campaigns.
Laura Rosenberger, the director of the organization, tells USA Today that the pattern used by Russia in 2016 in the United States is very similar to the pattern that it has used in other countries.
“These are all the tools they use to undermine democratic institutions in different places,” she said. “For a lot of Americans, the question of Russian interference in U.S. elections came out of nowhere. It sounds crazy to most people that this has been part of the Russian playbook for more than a decade.”
The group’s analysis claims that the goal of these tactics isn’t always to help a particular candidate win, but to undermine public faith in democracy.
“Either the institutions are corrupt or you can’t trust the vote,” explains former FBI agent Clinton Watts of Russia’s tactics.
According to the Alliance for Securing Democracy’s analysis, Russia has interfered in the following countries’ elections since 2004: Belarus, Bulgaria, Canada, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, United Kingdom, Ukraine and the United States.