Russians Hacked Voter Database of Florida Panhandle County: Reports

One of the two Florida county election departments that were successfully tapped into by Russian hackers before the 2016 election has been identified. Washington County, in the state’s Panhandle, was penetrated by the Russian military’s spy agency, the GRU, according to reports from The Washington Post and Politico. Trump received 77 percent of the more than 11,000 votes cast in the county, where a voter-registration database was breached; the region, with a population of 25,000, took a direct hit from Category 5 Hurricane Michael last fall. The other hacked county has not been named, though Politico reports it is believed to be a midsize county on the state’s east coast. The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security briefed Florida Gov. Ron De Santis about the attack this week, but Politico reports that federal authorities sought to keep the names of the counties confidential. Special Counsel Robert Mueller confirmed that Florida was a target of Russian hacking in his final report, but it has remained unclear to what extent. De Santis told Politico that there was no evidence of “manipulation” of voter information.