Media Alert: W.Va. Secretary of State schedules press conference on election cybersecurity threats

Event is today at 10:15 a.m. at State Capitol

CHARLESTON, W.Va. —  Following up on a briefing held Wednesday evening with federal intelligence officials, West Virginia Secretary of State Mac Warner is hosting a press conference today to discuss the discovery of election cybersecurity activity by foreign entities designed to disrupt the General Election.

WVSOS officials said voters in several states are reporting that they have received intimidating and threatening emails.  Federal authorities have traced the emails to foreign sources.  West Virginia is not one of the states included in this possible breach of information.

According to the FBI, voter registration files in at least four states appear to have been breached and information on voters being used to make contact with those voters. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence and leaders from other federal agencies were able to provide public attribution of activities intended to influence public opinion relating to our elections

Federal authorities confirmed that some voter registration information has been obtained by Iran, and separately, by Russia. This data can be used to communicate false information to registered voters that could cause confusion, sow chaos, and undermine confidence in American democracy.

To keep the general public apprised of this rapidly developing situation, Secretary Warner has called a press conference for this morning:

     When: 10:15 a.m., Thursday, Oct. 22

     Where: Outside the West Virginia State Capitol in front of the Governor’s West Wing entrance

Secretary Warner will start the press conference with an updated assessment of the situation.  He will be accompanied by Dave Tackett, WVSOS Chief Technology Officer.

Both men will take questions.

MEDIA NOTE: Individual interviews for those media outlets who cannot attend the press conference will be scheduled for after 11 a.m. this morning.

For more information, please contact Deputy Chief of Staff & Director of Communications Mike Queen at (304) 669-5595.

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