Top Dem wants election systems hacking attempts made public

Top Dem wants election systems hacking attempts made public
© Greg Nash

The top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee is pushing for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to make public any attempts by foreign powers to hack elections databases, networks and other systems.  

"While I am not aware of evidence that the 2016 voting process itself was subjected to manipulation, and have no reason to doubt the validity of the election results, we know that the DHS and FBI have confirmed two intrusions into voter registration databases in Arizona and Illinois by foreign-based hackers," Sen. Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerCentrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting On The Money: Centrists gain leverage over progressives in Senate infrastructure battle | White House rules out gas tax hike Democrats introduce resolution apologizing to LGBT community for government discrimination MORE (D-Va.) wrote in a letter to Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly on Tuesday.

"I therefore urge you to work closely with state and local election officials to disclose publicly which states were targeted, to ensure that they are fully aware of the threat, and to make certain that their cyber defenses are able to neutralize this danger. We are not made safer by keeping the scope and breadth of these attacks secret."


The attacks on Arizona and Illinois were made public during the course of the 2016 elections. Recently leaked documents from the National Security Agency make clear that a broader hacking campaign targeted elections officials across multiple states. 

There is no evidence that vote tallies were directly manipulated by foreign hackers, however. 

“The good news is that these attempts were not successful in 2016. The bad news is that it is clear that these will not be the last attempts that we will see, and the next electoral cycle in 2018 will provide further targets for hackers,” wrote Warner in his letter.