Excerpted from The Financial Times: The FBI is investigating the suspected hacking of the election computer systems in at least two US states by a foreign agent and has warned other states to watch out for potential intrusions.
Officials in Arizona and Illinois confirmed that their systems had been the subject of cyber attacks in July, with information about as many as 200,000 voters hacked in Illinois.
The intrusion comes after the alleged Russian hack of the Democratic National Committee which led to the leak of thousands of emails discussing the election campaign.
The warning by the FBI has highlighted concerns that the computer systems that are now central to the infrastructure of managing elections in the US could be vulnerable to hacking, including by foreign actors.
The warning to the state election authorities was contained in an FBI “flash alert”, which was distributed on August 18 and which listed seven suspicious IP addresses and tools that had been used to hack the website of one state board of election in July.
“The FBI is requesting that states contact their Board of Elections and determine if any similar activity to their logs, both inbound and outbound, has been detected,” said the warning that was first reported by Yahoo News.
A US official said that so far there was no evidence that any information on the databases had been tampered with as a result of the cyber attacks.
Cyber security experts say that there is a theoretical possibility that hackers could seek to manipulate election results by hacking election board computers, but they say that voter registration records are also an attractive target for online criminals as a source of personal information such as social security numbers. Keep reading