Tech by VICE

Former Exploit Broker The Grugq Talks Election Interference and Disinformation

On CYBER, the South African infosec celebrity breaks down what we can expect to see in the lead up to 2020.

May 30 2019, 6:50pm

After the apparent success of Russia’s much-publicized disinformation campaign against the American electoral system during the 2016 Presidential election, endless media reports, pundits, politicians, and intel officials have been warning that the 2020 election is already under attack by foreign powers bent on weakening the U-S of A.

But is meddling actually happening? And if so, are these hackers and spies dispatched by the Kremlin or some other hostile state using the 2016 playbook of political hacks and troll farms?

The answer might not be so simple amid a social media landscape polluted with far-right trolls, Saudi disinfo bots, and Iranian fake news.

To make sense of it all, on this week’s CYBER, host Ben Makuch sat down with one of InfoSec’s only true celebrities: The Grugq (who has more than 100,000 followers on his highly entertaining Twitter account).

For the uninformed, the Grugq is a South African hacker, security research, OPSEC expert, and has a history of being an exploit broker who has a rolodex of government contacts (he once claimed in Forbes to be taking in over $1 million in a single year skimming a fee off of exploit sales as a middle-man to intelligence agencies).

In this episode, the hacking and spy expert cuts through the media tailspinning around disinfo campaigns to tell us what 2020 election meddling might just look like.

The Grugq