November 22, 2021

Iranian Hackers Stole Vote Info to Influence 2020 Election

  • Executive, Flyover Country

By: Konrad Holden

In Brief:

The New York Post reported last Thursday that two hackers with ties to the Iranian government stole voter information and attempted to threaten Democratic voters while posing as members of the Proud Boys. The hackers also accessed a major media organization’s network and attempted to influence the election. The two suspects were indicted by a grand jury though they are still on the run.

The Background:

There have been allegations of multiple countries meddling with U.S. elections including Russia and China. Now there is sure evidence that Iran may have also interfered in the 2020 election.

Two Iranian hackers with ties to a cybersecurity firm that has done work for the Iranian government were accused of illegally obtaining voter information.

The two men, ​​Seyyed Mohammad Hosein Musa Kazemi and Sajjad Kashian, are accused of downloading confidential voter information for 100,000 voters in an unnamed state. They used the information to email the voters while posing as members of the Proud Boys and told them to vote for Trump on election day “or we will come after you.” They demanded that the registered Democrats switch their party affiliation.

The pair also sent emails and messages to Trump campaign officials and other GOP politicians claiming that Democrats were going to use mail-in ballots and dead voters to sway the election.

The same hackers also gained access to an unnamed media company’s network. Whatever they hoped to do there was thwarted by the FBI and the media company.

Both hackers are still at large and authorities are offering $10 million in exchange for information about the pair.

Notable Quotes:

“The United States will never tolerate any foreign actors’ attempts to undermine our free and democratic elections. As a result of the charges unsealed today, and the concurrent efforts of our U.S. government partners, Kazemi and Kashian will forever look over their shoulders as we strive to bring them to justice.” - Damian Williams, US Attorney for the Southern District of New York

 

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