The U.S. Democratic National Committee has notified the FBI that it had thwarted a hacking attempt on its voter database.
Bob Lord, the DNC's chief security officer, briefed the leaders of state parties on the attempt at a meeting Wednesday in Chicago.
"This attempt is further proof that there are constant threats as we head into midterm elections, and we must remain vigilant in order to prevent future attacks,'' Lord said in a statement.
The attack was discovered late Monday by Lookout, the cybersecurity firm working for the DNC.
NEW: Cyber security firm @Lookout confirms it discovered a phishing site trying to replicate a login page for a technology provider to Democratic/progressive campaigns & organizations— Jeff Seldin (@jseldin) August 22, 2018
"After notifying the hosting provider the phishing site was then taken down by DigitalOcean within hours" per @Lookout statement, adding its VP of security intelligence "reached out to DNC, NGP VAN, and DigitalOcean to initiate the response process and start the investigation"— Jeff Seldin (@jseldin) August 22, 2018
The attack took the form of a fake login page meant to appear identical to that of the service that hosts the database. It was intended to deceive people into revealing personal information such as usernames and passwords — a process known as phishing
The Democratic Party's cybersecurity has been an issue since the 2016 presidential election, when Russian government-linked hackers compromised DNC servers and publicly revealed internal communications that exploited divisions between Bernie Sanders' and Hillary Clinton's campaigns as the two candidates vied for the Democratic presidential nomination. Russia has repeatedly denied any involvement.
Hackers also accessed the email accounts of Clinton's campaign chairman, John Podesta, and systematically released the contents throughout the fall campaign.
Mike Murray, a security researcher at Lookout, said no one fell for the ploy detected Monday before the page was taken down.