Macron's French presidential campaign emails leaked online

Cornelia Mascio
Mag 6, 2017

The campaign team of French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron on Friday confirmed it had suffered a "massive and coordinated hacking attack" after internal documents were released online, slamming an attempt at "democratic destabilization".

On Friday evening, a profile called EMLEAKS posted a nine-gigabyte leak to Pastebin, a web application where users can store plain text.

The En Marche! party has said the files only showed the normal functioning of a presidential campaign, but claimed fake documents were being circulated alongside authentic ones in order to sow "doubt and misinformation".

When asked whether Russian Federation was involved in the Macron email hack, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said: "These, like other similar accusations, are based on nothing and are pure slander". "They were pixel flawless".

In a statement, Macron's political movement En Marche! Soon after the documents were released, France's electoral commission issued guidance asking French publications to refrain from covering them.

While opinion polls credit Macron with a 24-point lead, investors are following the campaign closely since a Le Pen upset could reverse 60 years of European integration.

Macron's team previously blamed Russian interests for repeated attempts to hack its systems during the campaign, saying on 26 April it had been the target of failed attempts to steal email credentials since January.

Earlier on Friday evening, Le Pen's campaign staff said that its website had faced "regular and targeted" attacks during the campaign.

A physicist in France has worked out the maths to try to show that it's not impossible for Marine Le Pen to become French president on May 7th.

Macron, who extended his lead in the polls over Le Pen on Friday, is seen as the frontrunner in an election billed as the most important in France in decades.

On Wednesday, the two candidates confronted each other head-to-head in a vicious debate that more resembled an American-style shoutfest than the Descartian discourse that French voters are more accustomed to.

These archives landed just before an official halt on campaigning came into force ahead of voting day: government officials and candidates are banned from publicly discussing campaigns during this blackout period. Her party has financial ties to Russia, and the candidate made a surprise visit to the Kremlin in March, where she met with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

After ditching France's traditional left-right parties in a first-round election, voters are now choosing between Macron's business-friendly, pro-European vision and Le Pen's protectionist, closed-borders view that resonates with workers left behind by globalization. But the accompanying message on Islam is still uncompromising, with Le Pen warning darkly of "the restriction of freedoms that have multiplied in our country through the rise of Islamic fundamentalism".

Florian Philippot, the No. 2 in Le Pen's anti-immigration National Front party, asked in a tweet: "Will the #Macronleaks teach us something that investigative journalism deliberately buried?"

Le Pen, who was pelted with eggs a day earlier in Brittany, was seen leaving the cathedral Friday via an unmarked door, putting her arms over her head as if to protect herself from projectiles, and diving into a black vehicle.

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