Cybersecurity expert weighs in on foreign threats to the election

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INDIANAPOLIS – Federal Intelligence officials are warning countries like Russia, China and Iran could reach voters and potentially manipulate them 

“It’s not surprising that we’ve witnessed this. What is surprising is the governmental reaction,” IU’s Associate Professor of Law Asaf Lubin said.

United States officials are accusing Iran of manipulating voters ahead of the presidential election. 

The director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe says Iran obtained voter information and is sending intimidating messages through email. 

Lubin is a cybersecurity expert too. He says voter registration information is easily accessible depending on who you give your information to. 

“In a political age where this voter registration plays a massive role in targeted ads it’s not surprising any of that data is easily accessible across the internet,” Lubin said. 

He says anytime you attend a political event and sign up to receive emails you’re putting your personal information out there.  

Political parties use it to reach you and it can be stored online 

“The reality is a lot of that voter information which again is sold and share across an ecosystem that’s very active ahead of elections,” Lubin explained.

The Indiana Secretary of State’s Office tries to prevent voter registration information from being released. 

In fact, Indiana law only allows a small group of people to gain access through a public record’s request. 

For example, the media and the state committee for a major political party. 

Lubin says voters need to be mindful about who they’re giving information to and what they click on. 

“Don’t assume the fact you see a video, reading a news piece, tweet or email that it’s accurate,” Lubin said. 

He says if you’re skeptical about an email or text to do your research and verify if it’s true. 

United States officials say both Iran and Russia have obtained some Americans’ voter registration information but say there’s no way for them to change the results of the election.   

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