Russian hackers attack two US voter databases: reportsArchive
WASHINGTON: Russian-based hackers may have been responsible for two recent attempts to breach US voter registration databases in two states, raising fears Moscow is trying to undermine November’s presidential election, US media said on Monday.
The incidents led the FBI to send a “flash alert” to election officials earlier this month, asking them to watch for similar cyber-attacks. The FBI alert, first reported by Yahoo News, did not mention Russia.
However, the authorities have attributed the attacks to Russian spy agencies, NBC News quoted US intelligence officials as saying.
“This is the closest we’ve come to tying a recent hack to the Russian government,” one unidentified official said, adding “there is serious concern” Moscow may be seeking to create uncertainty in the election process.
Although the alert does not identify targeted states, Yahoo News quoted officials as saying they were Illinois and Arizona.
Illinois officials said last month that they shut down their state’s voter registration after a hack.
On Monday state officials said the hackers stole data from as many as 200,000 voter records, although they told The Chicago Tribune no such record had been deleted or altered.
In Arizona hackers unsuccessfully tried to breach the voter registration system using malicious software, reports said.
The state shut down the system for nine days beginning in late June, after the discovery of malware on an election official’s computer. However, officials concluded the system was not successfully compromised.
The incidents prompted Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson to hold a conference call with state election officials earlier this month.
Published in Dawn, August 31st, 2016