Department of Homeland Security Response to NBC's 2016 Election Report

“NBC’s reporting tonight on the 2016 elections is not accurate and is actively undermining efforts of the Department of Homeland Security to work in close partnership with state and local governments to protect the nation’s election systems from foreign actors. As we have consistently said, DHS has shared information with affected states in a timely manner, and we will continue to do so. We have no intelligence – new or old – that corroborates NBC’s reporting that state systems in seven states were compromised by Russian government actors.  We believe tonight’s story to be factually inaccurate and misleading.  In fact, the formerly classified documents released to Mr. Moss and shown on NBC were working documents based on preliminary information and ongoing investigations, not confirmed and validated intelligence on Russian activities – in any case they do not show what NBC claims they do. The department has been clear and consistent that we are aware of 21 states targeted by Russian government cyber actors leading up to the 2016 election.  In nearly all states, only preparatory activity like scanning was observed.  We have said it before and will say it again: in no case is there any evidence that votes were changed or that Russian actors gained access to systems involved in vote tallying.  Once again, reports using anonymous, outdated, and incomplete information are being misconstrued as fact. We stand by our state and local partners who are working diligently to secure the nation’s election infrastructure in 2018 and beyond.”

– Tyler Q. Houlton, DHS Acting Press Secretary