Rubio says hackers penetrated Florida elections systems

Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioApple under pressure to unlock Pensacola shooter's phones Senators offer bill to create alternatives to Huawei in 5G tech Surging Sanders draws fresh scrutiny ahead of debate MORE (R-Fla.) told The New York Times on Friday that hackers penetrated a Florida county’s elections system in 2016.

Rubio's comments come a week after special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerSchiff: Trump acquittal in Senate trial would not signal a 'failure' Jeffries blasts Trump for attack on Thunberg at impeachment hearing Live coverage: House Judiciary to vote on impeachment after surprise delay MORE’s report revealed that Russians sent malicious software to Florida county government officials overseeing the 2016 election.

Rubio, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, told the Times that there was an intrusion into a county’s elections system but that the target or targets were not notified.

He said national security officials opted to issue a blanket warning about hacking efforts as a way to protect intelligence methods.

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"Everybody has been told what it is they need to do to protect themselves from the intrusion," Rubio said. "I don’t believe the specific victims of the intrusion have been notified. The concern was that in a number of counties across the country, there are a couple of people with the attitude of: 'We’ve got this; we don’t need your help. We don’t think we need to do what you are telling us we need to do.'"

Rubio told the newspaper that the hackers were "in a position" to change voter roll data, but it does not appear they did so.

"My biggest concern is that on Election Day you go vote and have mass confusion because voter registration information has been deleted from the systems," he said.

Rubio and former Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William NelsonThe most expensive congressional races of the last decade Lobbying world Bottom Line MORE (D-Fla.) wrote a letter to Florida’s top elections official last year calling on him to seek federal assistance in securing the state’s elections systems.

A spokesperson for Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) told The Hill on Friday that "the FBI has reached out and is working on scheduling a briefing with Senator Scott in the next few weeks" to brief him and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantisRonald Dion DeSantisFlorida Supreme Court rules convicted felons must pay fines, fees before voting Florida moves to purchase land to protect Everglades from oil drilling Top Latino group: Trump is about to hold a 'fake Christian campaign rally' MORE (R) about the hacking detailed in Mueller’s report. 

Scott, who was governor during the 2016 election, sent a letter to the FBI last week asking it to confirm the hacking. For his part, DeSantis has expressed frustration with what he says is a lack of transparency from federal authorities.

"They won’t tell us which county it was. Are you kidding me?" he said at a Thursday press conference in Miami. "Why would you have not said something immediately?"