Former Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen's (D) Senate campaign notified the FBI on Thursday that it may have been hacked, a revelation that comes amid growing fears of cyberattacks targeting the upcoming 2018 midterm elections.
The campaign wrote a letter to the FBI notifying the bureau that it had received multiple emails on Feb. 28 about a planned media buy that requested funds be wired to an international back account in Dubai, CNN reported.
No funds were diverted, campaign counsel Robert Cooper told CNN, but “due to the fact that the imposters knew the media buy was imminent, we are concerned that there has been an unauthorized intrusion into the extended campaign organization.”
In another instance, a hacker reportedly impersonated Bredesen by emailing the candidate’s contacts using an address similar to Bredesen’s own. The former governor later warned recipients not to click on a link in the email.
The emails sent to the Tennessee Democrat's campaign were traced back to the U.K., Nigeria and Ghana, according to CNN.
Bredesen is running to replace Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerCheney set to be face of anti-Trump GOP How leaving Afghanistan cancels our post-9/11 use of force The unflappable Liz Cheney: Why Trump Republicans have struggled to crush her MORE (R-Tenn.), who announced he will not seek reelection. The Democrat is pushing to face Rep. Marsha BlackburnMarsha BlackburnChina draws scrutiny over case of tennis star Peng Shuai Sunday shows preview: Boosters open to all US adults; House Dems pass spending plan on to Senate Photos of the Week: President Biden, Kenosha protests and a pardon for Peanut Butter MORE (R-Tenn.), who is considered the frontrunner for the GOP nomination.
The Cook Political Report, a top nonpartisan election handicapper, rates the election as a "toss-up."
The attempted hacks of Bredesen’s campaign come amid widespread belief among lawmakers that Russia and other entities will attempt to interfere with this year’s U.S. midterm elections.
Many lawmakers and U.S. officials have expressed concerns that the U.S. is not adequately prepared to prevent cyberattacks from Russia in the upcoming elections.
Several administration officials have said they have not explicitly been directed to counteract Russian efforts, and others have said U.S. efforts must be more robust.
President TrumpDonald TrumpFormer defense secretary Esper sues Pentagon in memoir dispute Biden celebrates start of Hanukkah Fauci says lies, threats are 'noise' MORE said Tuesday that the U.S. will work to counteract any Russian meddling efforts "very strongly."
– Josh Delk contributed