Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Attempted Hack of US Voter Database Traced to IP Address Used by US Government - By Rudy Panko

An attempted hack of a voter database in Georgia was traced to an IP address used by the Department of Homeland Security. We blame Russia, of course.
Every pompous television pundit and untrustworthy intelligence agency wants you, the vulnerable news consumer, to believe that Putin hacked the DNC from the Kremlin’s basement, directly resulting in Hillary Clinton’s defeat — even though it was clearly “her turn”.
And we must admit — although it pains us to do so — that all the unverifiable accusations and rumors point to direct Kremlin meddling in our beloved American democracy. It’s a simple fact: You cannot find an anonymous source from an anonymous intelligence agency who will say that Russian didn’t steal Hillary Clinton’s emails. Damning.
Which is why we were so shocked to learn that a government that doesn’t speak Russian attempted to break into Georgia’s voter registration database.
As IT World reports:
Georgia’s secretary of state says the state was hit with an attempted hack of its voter registration database from an IP address linked to the federal Department of Homeland Security.
Of course, it could have just been a routine test to make sure states had secure voter registration databases. The problem, of course, is that Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp was not informed — not even after the attempted hack — that the DHS planned on conducted such a test:
“This morning I sent a letter to DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson demanding to know why,” he said in the post.
The DHS said it had received the letter. “We are looking into the matter. DHS takes the trust of our public and private sector partners seriously, and we will respond to Secretary Kemp directly,” the department said in a statement.
The hacking attempt reportedly took place on Nov. 15, after the presidential election, according to the Wall Street Journal, which saw a copy of the letter.
At no time has my office agreed to or permitted DHS to conduct penetration testing or security scans of our network,” Kemp wrote in his letter. “Moreover, your department has not contacted my office since this unsuccessful incident to alert us of any security event that would require testing or scanning of our network.”
We’re sure this lack of communication is an innocent bureaucratic slip-up. No reason to suspect any foul play. After all, there is zero evidence that the U.S. government attempted to break into voter registration databases. To report something like that would be irresponsible fake news.
The most likely explanation is that Russian hackers took control of DHS systems and then attempted to break into Georgia’s voter rolls. Very sneaky. And very, very Russian.