As final voting in the 2016 US presidential election approaches, questions continue to swirl around Wikileaks and its release of an email archive copied from the personal files of John Podesta, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton’s campaign chair. It would be impossible, in the space of a single column, to fully consider the content and implications of those emails. There are, however, two relevant questions which those interested in the matter should carefully consider.
First, are the emails authentic and unaltered?
Clinton and her surrogates don’t want to answer that question. They stick to claiming that the mails haven’t been authenticated and hinting that they may have been altered.
The facts: Not all of the emails can be authenticated as to origin and content. But some can be, and some have been. As Bob Graham of Errata Security points out, many of the emails are digitally signed using the Domainkeys Identified Mail verification standard, which can be used to verify that email comes from the server it claims to come from and has not been modified since leaving that server. To date, no one has publicly demonstrated that the origin, or so much as a comma of the content, of any of the Podesta emails has been altered. So far as we can tell, they’re the genuine article.