Tags: Barack Obama | Cyber Security | Russia | Russia Probe | election systems | 2016 | intelligence

NBC: Obama Was Told 7 States Compromised by Russia

(NBC "Nightly News")

By    |   Tuesday, 27 Feb 2018 07:00 PM

U.S. intelligence agencies had evidence that state websites or voter registration systems in seven states were compromised by Russia-backed operatives before the 2016 election — but never told the states involved, NBC News reported.

Top-secret intelligence requested by President Barack Obama in his last weeks in office identified the states where analysts believed Russian operatives had compromised websites or databases, the news outlet reported.

As of January 2017, the intelligence community believed the states were Alaska, Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Texas, and Wisconsin, NBC News reported.

But though officials in Washington informed several of those states in the run-up to the election that foreign entities were probing their systems, none were told Russia was behind it, NBC News reported.

"I think the Obama administration should have been doing much more to push back against the Russians across the board," said Juan Zarate, an NBC News analyst who was deputy national security adviser for combating terrorism under President George W. Bush. "I think the U.S. was very meek and mild in how we responded to Russian aggression."

Denis McDonough, who was Obama's last chief of staff, disagreed, telling NBC News the administration acted to thwart the Russians before and after the election.

Numerous state election officials told NBC News the Department of Homeland Security has been stepping up communications with them, yet many are worried they are still not getting enough info from Washington.

"We have an extreme sense of urgency on insuring security of the 2018 elections, because you don't get a chance to do it over," Alex Padilla, California's secretary of state, told NBC News. Padilla said there was no evidence of a successful hack in California.

And Padilla warned it is "hugely imperative that intelligence be shared with state elections officials immediately in order to protect our election infrastructure and the integrity of election results."

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U.S. intelligence agencies never told the seven states they had evidence state websites or voter registration systems were compromised by Russia-backed operatives before the 2016 election, NBC News reported.
election systems, 2016, intelligence, states
Tuesday, 27 Feb 2018 07:00 PM
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