Author Topic: Panhandle county that backed Trump among Russian hacking victims  (Read 174 times)

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Panhandle county that backed Trump among Russian hacking victims


05/16/2019 10:21 PM EDT

TALLAHASSEE — Russian hackers breached a county elections department in the Florida Panhandle where voters turned out heavily for President Donald Trump in 2016, according to a report confirmed by POLITICO.

Washington County was one of two counties successfully hacked by Russians seeking voter information files. The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security in the past week have briefed Gov. Ron DeSantis and Florida’s congressional delegation about the attack, but federal authorities have asked that the names of the two counties be kept confidential.

The Washington Post reported that Russians were able to access Washington County voter information files. A person in Florida familiar with the investigation confirmed that Washington County was targeted after the attack had been revealed by officials in Washington, D.C. Two people in Florida said they suspect the second hacked elections office was in a mid-sized county on the East Coast of the state.

While it was known that Russians targeted Florida ahead of the 2016 election, the first confirmation that the effort was successful came in March, when special counsel Robert Mueller issued a report on Russian interference. The news jolted Florida officials, who had insisted that the effort three years ago was unsuccessful.

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