In a new blog post published on Thursday, the hacker, who goes by the name Guccifer 2.0, once again denied allegations from security experts that he is working for the Russian government. The hacker also released more documents and emails allegedly stolen from the computer servers of the Democratic National Committee.
"I'll tell you that everything I do I do at my own risk. This is my personal project and I'm proud of it. Yes, I risk my life. But I know it's worth it. No one knew about me several weeks ago," the hacker said, a response to the claims that he has links to the Russian government. "Nowadays the whole world's talking about me. It's really cool!"
"It seems the guys from CrowdStrike and the DNC would say I'm a Russian bear even if I were a catholic nun in fact," he added, referring to the cybersecurity company that investigated the hack, and said it was carried out by two hacking groups with links to Russian intelligence. "They just fucked up! They can prove nothing! All I hear is blah-blah-blah, unfounded theories and somebody's estimates."
Guccifer 2.0's new blog post comes a week after he spoke at length with Motherboard in an interview where he claimed to be from Romania. But at the time, when pressed, he declined to answer some questions in Romanian, and stalled, saying he didn't want us to waste his time.
"It seems the guys from CrowdStrike and the DNC would say I'm a Russian bear even if I were a catholic nun."
In this new blog post, which he wrote in the style of a "frequently asked questions" or FAQ, he simply claimed to be born in Eastern Europe, but refused to reveal where he is now.
"It's better for me to change my location as often as possible. I have to hide," Guccifer 2.0 added.
Several linguistics experts consulted by Motherboard last week agreed that the hacker's English wasn't native, and some said it showed signs of being the English of a Russian speaker, or someone from Eastern Europe. For example, multiple experts pointed to the irregular use of definite and indefinite articles as a clear sign that he could be Russian. In this new blog post, on the other hand, the hacker uses "the," "a," and "an," constantly, even where he shouldn't ("It's a nonsense" or "the truth about the politicians").
Compared to his previous posts and our interview with him, this new post is written in a much better English, although at times the hacker's language seems almost childish.
"This doesn't feel like it's written by the same person as the previous posts," an independent security researcher known as Pwn All The Things, who has been following the Guccifer 2.0 saga since the beginning, told Motherboard.
One linguist we talked to last week said Guccifer 2.0 could also be Moldovan given the country's mixed Romanian-Russian environment and the fact that many Moldovans identify as Romanian. In the FAQ, Guccifer 2.0 answers a question about Moldovan hackers saying the country "it's a part of Romania, so there's no reason to speak about it separately. So, there are also Romanian hackers there."
None of Guccifer 2.0's new claims is too revealing, and actually seems more smoke and mirrors calculated at confounding the conclusions experts have come to about the hack and the hacker's motives.
None of Guccifer 2.0's new claims is too revealing, and actually seems more smoke and mirrors
The leak of the DNC's Donald Trump opposition research, as well as all the documents related to Hillary Clinton, seemed to indicate that the hacker was trying to benefit the Republican candidate. This would align with the hypothesis that the hacker is working for the Russian government in an attempt to influence the US elections, given that Russian president Vladimir Putin has expressed support for the real-estate mogul.
But in this blog post, Guccifer 2.0 denies having any political goals, writing that "none of the candidates has my sympathies."
"Hillary seems so much false to me, she got all her money from political activities and lobbying, she is a slave of moguls, she is bought and sold. She never had to work hard and never risked everything she had. Her words don't meet her actions. And her collision with the DNC turned the primaries into farce.
Opposite to her, Donald Trump has earned his money himself. And at least he is sincere in what he says. His position is straight and clear.
Anyway that doesn't mean that I support him. I'm totally against his ideas about closing borders and deportation policy. It's a nonsense, absolute bullshit."
Despite his many answers, Guccifer 2.0 left us with even more questions. And, unfortunately, there's a very good chance that we'll never know the real answers.