Federal Agencies Working With States to Guard Voter Data Security
NEWS ANALYSIS: Federal authorities are investigating attempts to breach voter registration data and responding to state requests for assistance to secure systems.Voter registration officials in 21 states have contacted the Department of Homeland Security to request help in dealing with attempts to break into their voter registration systems. Responding to a letter sent from the bipartisan leadership of the House and Senate, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson reiterated his earlier messages about the willingness of his department to help states deal with cyber-attacks aimed at the voting process. So far, 20 states have experienced intrusions of sufficient severity that are considered causes for concern by DHS. The department has not said which states have been attacked. This is a significant increase since earlier this year, when only two states had reported being attacked. At this point, there are few details about what the hackers were after, although in most cases it appears it was voter registration databases rather than voting machines or the IT systems that support voting results.
While apparently some of the hackers have relationships with other criminal elements in Russia and have been involved in other Russian state-sponsored activities, there's no evidence that the Russian government was directing the hacking of U.S. voter registration data.