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Federal, W.Va. officials warn that 2020 election meddling, major or minor, will be taken seriously

By Phil Kabler, Charleston Gazette-Mail

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — U.S. Attorney Mike Stuart said Tuesday that any attempts to meddle in 2020 elections, even as academic exercises or “for giggles,” will be investigated and prosecuted by federal authorities.

“It is something the Justice Department and this office will not tolerate, even a little,” he said during a joint news conference with Secretary of State Mac Warner, adding, “We will treat every risk incredibly seriously.”

Warner said his office detected activity that may have been an attempt to penetrate the state’s new mobile voting system for overseas military during the 2018 election.

“No penetration occurred, and the security system protocols to protect our election process worked as designed,” he said, noting that IP addresses from the breach attempt were turned over to the FBI.

Stuart said the matter is under investigation, but stopped short of calling it a criminal investigation. “It’s an investigation. I don’t want to characterize it beyond that,” he said during the press conference at the Robert C. Byrd Federal Courthouse in Charleston. …

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