Federal investigators and computer scientists continue to examine a mysterious computer back channel between the Trump Organization and the Alfa Bank, one of Russia's biggest, CNN reported Thursday.
Citing unnamed sources, CNN reported an FBI probe remains open even though questions about a possible connection were widely dismissed several months ago.
According to the cable outlet, an unnamed U.S. official said investigators find the server relationship "odd," and are not ignoring it. CNN also reported, however, investigators have not yet determined whether a connection would be significant.
Last October, The New York Times, and Slate, were the first to report the server activity.
According to the Times, FBI officials spent weeks examining computer data that showed a stream of activity to a Trump Organization server and Alfa Bank.
Computer logs showed wo servers at Alfa Bank sent more than 2,700 "look-up" messages — described by the Times as a first step for one system's computers to talk to another — to a Trump-connected server beginning in the spring of 2016, the Times reported.
The FBI ultimately concluded there could be an innocuous explanation, like a marketing email or spam, for the computer contacts, the Times reported.
But according to CNN, those who have studied the data think the activity could suggest an intent to communicate by email during a period of time when ties between the Trump Organization and Russia are being closely scrutinized.
CNN reported a dozen computer researchers at a recent business conference in Washington, D.C., think the matter merits further scrutiny.
"It's not so much a smoking gun as a faint whiff of smoke a long way away," computer researcher, Richard Clayton of Cambridge University, told CNN. "Maybe there's something else going on. It's hard to tell."
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