A few days after New Mexico Secretary of State Dianna Duran notified all 33 county clerks that their biennial voter purge would be canceled this year, Deputy Bernalillo County Clerk Robert Adams made a disturbing discovery — 44,601 county files stored on the state’s voter registration database had been accessed and altered.
Accustomed to spending long hours in front of his computer, Adams says he was shocked to learn informational “flags,” which are attached to voter files after mail is returned by the U.S. Postal Service as undeliverable, had simply vanished on Valentine’s Day.
After securely logging on to the database, known as PowerProfile, Adam’s heart began beating a little faster as he started considering worst-case scenarios. He needed to know what happened before the Bernalillo County Board of Voter Registrations was convened the third Monday of March, the date required by state statute.
Adams worried a criminal might have breached a government intranet connection with the goal of stealing voters’ social security and driver license numbers and other sensitive personal identification information, including voters’ dates of birth and addresses.