Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg told Congress Wednesday that the FBI warned him months ago that Facebook should be on “heightened alert” about “hack and leak operations” that could be part of a foreign disinformation campaign in the final weeks before the 2020 election.
The Facebook honcho made the remarks during a Senate Commerce Committee hearing where he testified alongside Google’s Sundar Pichai and Twitter’s Jack Dorsey.
“One of the threats that the FBI has alerted our company and the public to was the possibility of a hack and leak operation in the days or weeks leading up to this election,” Zuckerberg said. “So you had both public testimony from the FBI and in private meetings alerts that were given—at least to our company, I assume the others as well–that suggested we be on high alert and sensitivity that if a trove of documents appeared, that we should view that with suspicion that it might be part of a foreign manipulation attempt.”
The FBI has had the computer and hard drive of Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden in its possession for almost a year.
In April of 2019, the younger Biden dropped three water-damaged Macbooks at a computer repair shop in Delaware owned by John Paul Mac Isaac. Isaac claims that in August, because the computers weren’t retrieved after 90 days, he was able to take legal possession and look inside. He said he was shocked to find troves of emails concerning the Bidens’ corrupt overseas business deals, as well as sexually explicit images on one of the laptops.
Isaac claims that he alerted the FBI to the computers’ contents in September of 2019 and that the Bureau made forensic copies of the laptop that November. In December, the FBI obtained a warrant to seize the material, but not before Isaac made several copies. He said he tried contacting several Republican members of congress and a Republican think tank about what he had found, but was ignored.
So finally, in early 2020, he contacted President Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani through an intermediary.
Two weeks ago, The New York Post broke the story about the emails found on Hunter Biden’s laptop.
One particularly damning email showed that Hunter Biden had introduced his father, then President Barack Obama’s vice president, to a top executive at Burisma Holdings, a notoriously corrupt energy firm where Hunter sat on the Board. A year later, Biden called for the ouster of a top Ukrainian prosecutor who was investigating corruption at Burisma, including corruption involving his son. Joe Biden has repeatedly denied knowing anything about Hunter’s business dealings in Ukraine.
Facebook and other media platforms have actively throttled the spread of the New York Post article, as well as many other news stories that have featured scandalous material from the laptop.
When asked by Senator Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) whether the FBI contacted Facebook about the New York Post article, Zuckerberg said the Bureau had not contacted them about that article “specifically,” but went on to suggest that he felt the FBI’s previous warning applied to the Hunter Biden laptop story.
“They alerted us to be on heightened alert around a hack and leak operation around the release of a trove of information,” Zuckerberg said.
Both Zuckerberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey admitted that they had no evidence that the article was the work of Russian election interference.
Director Of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe debunked the Deep State conspiracy theory on Oct. 19, saying there is no intelligence that supports the idea that Hunter Biden’s emails are linked to Russian disinformation.
Republican national security experts noted on Twitter that Zuckerberg’s revelation confirmed their “worst suspicions.”
Yep. Worst suspicions confirmed. FBI obtained Biden docs, and within days or weeks, someone with access to that very sensitive info attempted to preemptively cover for the Biden family. https://t.co/O0LojzCKR8
— Jordan Schachtel (@JordanSchachtel) October 28, 2020
Zuckerberg states the FBI warned them a while ago that weeks leading up to the election that there will be attempts to interfere with the election with hacked documents!!!
The FBI instructed FACEBOOK to censor anything negative about Biden knowing what would be coming out!!!
— Rich Higgins (@RichHiggins_DC) October 28, 2020
Last week, 19 GOP lawmakers sent a letter to the FBI, arguing it would have been a “gross error in judgment” if the agency had Hunter Biden’s laptop and hard drive but withheld it from Trump’s legal team during the House impeachment hearings.
“If the FBI was, in fact, in possession of this evidence and failed to alert the White House to its existence that would have given even more weight to the president’s legal defense, this was a gross error in judgment and a severe violation of trust,” the letter stated.