The problem is, that without additional information, even a conclusive, no doubt about it, hit could just as likely be proof of precognition as it would be proof of time travel.
More likely, IMO. Absent a huge breakthrough, the energy requirements for backwards time travel are immense. This would require significant backing, and not many time machines. This would make the technology easy to control- and while a temporal prime directive isn’t guaranteed, discretion is likely to be part of their standing orders.
Also, the most plausible rearwards time travel systems people have come up with can only go as far back as the completion of the machine. It’s remotely possible that someone will find a way around this, but it doesn’t seem likely.
The article touches on the ideas that the timeline might correct for any interference, to include spilling of future knowledge. Given that relativity seems to allow for time travel, it does seem likely that the timeline has at least some resilience to meddling.
Precognition, though, doesn’t really require new science. Sort of. In principle, someone who is *really* good at analyzing non-precog data could appear to be precognitive. They would just notice connections that other people miss. We already know that there are some people far better at this than others. Psychology and neurology might need to revise some estimates of the computing capabilities of the human brain, but nothing about the process of computation in the brain would necessarily need to be revised. It would be like ramping up the clock speed of a CPU design, while leaving the design itself fundamentally intact.
Occam’s razor would appear to support a pseudo-precog interpretation of any hits, barring additional evidence that either rules that out, or directly supports actual precognition or time travel.
This could still be a momentous discovery- figuring out how these pseudo-precogs manage such impressive feats of data analysis could be a ridiculously huge deal for the information age, up close to the invention, and later widescale use, of computers. At the end of the day a human still has to make use of the information a computer spits out- and the better we can do that, the better off we are. The computer becomes more useful since we can do more with what it does, and we’d probably even need them less. Less need, but more powerful when needed? I’d love to have that.