South Carolina’s voter registration system was reportedly hit by almost 150,000 hack attempts on Election Day 2016. According to a post-election report by the South Carolina State Election Commission, it is likely that most of the hacking attempts came from automated computer bots, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday (16 July). President Donald Trump comfortably won the state of South Carolina in the November election. However, WSJ reports that there is no evidence to suggest that the attempted cyberattacks targeting the state’s voter registration system were successful.
“Security has been a top priority for the [State Election Commission] since implementing the statewide voting system in 2004,” Chris Whitmire, the State Election Commission’s director of public information and training, told WSJ.
“However, events leading up to the 2016 General Election, including the breaches of other states’ voter-registration systems, created an election-security environment that was very different.”
In September 2016, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials remotely conducted a “cyber-hygiene scan” for South Carolina that examined the state agency’s websites and office networks for potential vulnerabilities.