Is the Department of Homeland Security writing off an attempted elections hack by one of its employees? Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp thinks so, and he wants President-elect Donald Trump to look into the matter:
In a letter sent to Trump on Dec. 13, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp said DHS has made multiple attempts to “infiltrate our network,” including a “large attack” on Nov. 15 — which DHS disputes — that prompted him to send a letter to Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson.
Kemp, who oversees Georgia’s elections, said several of the alleged DHS attempts came at “very concerning” times that suggest they may have been political retaliation.
DHS investigated the “large attack” and determined that it was not a hack attempt. Instead, Johnson told Kemp that a DHS contractor in Georgia simply visited Kemp’s website to research a professional license offered by his office. Kemp, however, doesn’t buy it:
The secretary of state insisted Georgia’s systems would not have sounded the alarm over the activity DHS is describing.
“I mean, we have that happen all the time, every single day in our office, and we never had the red flags that were raised in this incident,” he said.
“We’re going to need to see … it recreated,” he added. “They have yet to do that.”
Georgia’s “IT folks have been trying to recreate this, and we cannot do it,” Kemp explained.
The federal government, he added, was “just kind of writing this off.”
Kemp has been one of the most vocal critics of the ides of adding elections systems to DHS’s portfolio of critical infrastructure. And if DHS really is attempting to brush an employee’s illicit activities under the rug, who can blame him?