FBI alert sparks fears that state voting systems are under digital assault
Could hacks of Arizona’s and Illinois’ voter databases be part of a Russian attempt to meddle in the U.S. election? By CORY BENNETT and ERIC GELLER

The FBI’s decision to issue a nationwide alert about the possible hacking of state election offices after breaches in Illinois and Arizona is raising concerns that a nationwide attack could be afoot, with the potential for creating havoc on Election Day.

It’s possible that the motivation behind the two state hacks was less about the political system and more about cash. Voter registration data sets include valuable information — such as names, birth dates, phone numbers and physical and email addresses — that criminal hackers can bundle and flip on the black-market “dark web” for thousands of dollars.

But some cyber experts said the FBI’s alert, first revealed by Yahoo News on Monday, could be a sign that investigators are worried that foreign actors are attempting a wide-scale digital onslaught.

A former lead agent in the FBI’s Cyber Division said the hackers’ use of a particular attack tool and the level of the FBI’s alert “more than likely means nation-state attackers.” The alert was coded “Amber,” designating messages with sensitive information that “should not be widely distributed and should not be made public,” the ex-official said.

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How a former extremist became a counterterrorism analyst


Watch a report on Jesse Curtis Morton’s transformation.

Federal prosecutors once regarded Jesse Curtis Morton as a threat to national security.

The FBI said the pro-jihadist website he helped found, RevolutionMuslim.com, inspired a number of terrorist plots. On that website, militant training videos, bomb-making instructions, praise for al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden and chat rooms for discussions among members created a multi-media stew of toxic content, they said.

In 2012, Morton was sentenced to more than 11 years in prison for his role in running the site.

Now, just four years later, Morton is free and has been hired as a terrorism analyst at a George Washington University-based think tank.

In a broadcast-exclusive interview airing Monday, PBS NewsHour Weekend anchor Hari Sreenivasan talks with Morton about how this former extremist went from being wanted by the FBI to sought out by some of the top counterterrorism analysts in Washington.

this week the senate will vote on whether or not to give the fbi warrantless access to your browsing data. this is extremely dangerous and a violation of privacy. not only would the fbi be able to essentially hack into your computers and internet service, but they might also hack into ones overseas. anything on your computers, they’ll be able to have access to. this is an extremely dangerous power the fbi is trying to get, and it CAN be stopped, but only if you guys are willing to put forth the effort.

how do you stop it? first, get the word out. twitter, tumblr, facebook, just get the word out by either making your own status or sharing this link

secondly, call your senators. on this website, just enter your phone number and it will give you a script to read off of. it will take you less than 30 seconds, trust me. you can also tweet them, send them emails, etc. all the contact info is on this site here. they will listen. dont know who your senators are? go here and scroll to the bottom. it lists all the senators and who you can call. also, you can tweet at them or send them an email. (all the links in this paragraph lead to the same source)

guys, it is extremely important this bill not get passed. PLEASE reblog this and at least tweet at them? you dont even have to think of anything to type. you literally click the tweet button and it does it for you. please, guys, please.


President Obama Speaks On Pulse Nightclub Shooting: “Not Just an Act of Terror, an Act of Hate” (Video)

We’ve had to witness President Obama give one of these way too many times. During his speech, on the mass shooting that occurred at Pulse nightclub in Orlando that has so far left 50 people dead and another 53 wounded, the President said he just finished a briefing with FBI Director James Comey and his advisers.

The President said authorities have reached no definitive conclusions on the motivations of the killer and that it is not clear how a terrorist group inspired the shooting. Stream the full statement after the jump:

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