Among other, Russia targeted Pennsylvania. In this series, we explore why Russia targeted Voter Registration Databases. We’ll do this by using data directly from Pennsylvania’s Voter Registration Database (legally).
We know that DHS warned at least 21 states that Russian government hackers targeted their voter registration databases seeking vulnerabilities in the U.S. election infrastructure.
We also know that DHS didn’t notify the targeted states until October of this year.
States control their Voter Registration Files. DHS claims certainty that the files weren’t touched. But, how can they be certain if the states didn’t even know they were being targeted?
Why Voter Registrations?
Why was Russia targeting Voter Registration Systems from as early as last February and in some states through December, two months after the election?
How could hacking a voter registration database be part of hacking an election?
The most obvious answer is disenfranchisement. What if voters are deleted? Or, what if their address or identifying information is changed? If this information is changed, the voters whose information was changed won’t be listed in the poll-books. The voters would either cast a provisional ballot or they would choose to walk away without voting.
A recent article in the Christian Science Monitor highlights this potential danger.
But there is a more ominous way that a hacked registration database could contribute to election hacking.
Election “hacking” has many faces
Most people think of “election hacking” as totals being changed. Like any sophisticated crime, though, there is a second part. The cover-up.
Anyone changing vote totals needs also to make us think nothing really happened. They need us to feel like there is a reason for the results. Disgruntled voters? Changing demographics? A poor campaign? Nothing to see here. Please move along.
Drop thousands of “zombie” Democrats into the right precincts and bingo! Without even placing a vote for them, you are able to frame the narrative that Democrats didn’t show up to vote.
Any semi-plausible explanation that will keep us from rethinking our election systems and ending the game for good will suffice.
We rely on voter registration data to give us information about voters. How many voters are registered in each precinct? Are they Democrats? Republicans? Not affiliated with either major party? Registration data answers those questions.
How many voters went to the polls? Was there low turnout in some areas? Higher turnout in others? The answers to these questions help explain unexpected outcomes.
What about a zombie hack?
But what if the numbers that we all accepted were false? What if altered data disenfranchised some voters? What if “zombie voters” changed the demographics?
What if “zombie” voters placed electronic votes?
Machine Hacking and Tally System Hacking could be enough to turn an election without touching the Voter Registration Database.
Nationally, we voted at 54 percent. Lots of extra non-voters to cover a limited hack.
If you need to hack a Voter Registration Database you are trying to do something that may exceed the ability for the results to look plausible with an unaltered database.
Why would Russia risk the election being secured or being switched to paper as in other countries? The reason they did it was because they thought they needed to.
We want everyone to know what Voter Registration Files do and why they are so critical. We want everyone to know why we are so worried. Most of all, we want you to know this information because the rest of our story depends on it.
Read the rest of the Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Series:
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part I (Current article)
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part II
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part III
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part IV
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part V
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part VI
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part VII
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part VIII
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part IX
- Pennsylvania Rabbit Hole Part X
Written by Unhackthevote