Russian attacks ‘went beyond politics’ -- setting up social media groups for sex addicts in an effort to conduct blackmail: CNN
Russian President Vladimir Putin (Photo: Screen capture)

CNN senior investigative correspondent Drew Griffin said Monday that Russian troll farm attacks on social media "went beyond politics" and flirted with outright blackmail.

Griffin detailed the "astounding" efforts by Russia's Internet Research Agency, a/k/a "the troll farm", to influence the political dialogue in the U.S.

"The report obtained by CNN shows how the trolls, as a group, regularly tried to co-opt unsuspecting Americans to work for them by holding rallies, staging protests, even handing over their personal information," Griffin said, pointing to fake Black Live Matters and gun rights related Facebook groups. "This report reveals something that is even beyond politics," he added ominously.

"Russians made up a fictitious group called the Army of Jesus, which was targeting Christians, and was offering free counseling to people with sexual addiction," Griffin said. "This could have been a way to create an opportunity to blackmail or manipulate individuals, essentially a way to pressure Americans into working for the Russians."

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