BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan reassured voters Sunday that their data is secure, two days after state officials announced an investigation into a Russian investor’s ties to election software that maintains part of the state’s voter registration system.
“We’re fairly confident that nothing has been done,” Hogan said.
He insisted voter information is still safe, less than a week after the FBI alerted Hogan and other Maryland state officials that a Russian investor, with ties to the Kremlin, finances ByteGrid LLC.
Since 2015, that company has had a hand in storing Maryland’s voter registration, candidacy, election management and election night results.
“We don’t believe that there’s been any breach at all. We have backup systems. There may be nothing to it, but it just was concerning enough that we wanted to have it investigated,” Hogan said.
In a letter Friday, Hogan requested that the Department of Homeland Security take a look at the Maryland Board of Elections network.
“This problem is getting more and more serious,” said Michael Greenberger of the University of Maryland Law School.
But Greenberger isn’t convinced and said Maryland’s Attorney General Brian Frosh needs to be aggressive on the tight timeline until midterm elections.
“This is not a Republican issue. This is not a Democratic issue. It’s a Maryland state issue, and the electoral processes of Maryland are under attack. There is demonstrated incompetence, and it needs to be given the highest priority,” he said.
Senate President Thomas Mike Miller and House Speaker Michael Busch said Friday they’re determined to get to the bottom of the case.
“We’re going to make certain — governor, speaker, myself, and everybody involved in government — that nothing untoward happens as a result of this action,” Miller said.
Officials are well aware that a possible leak to the Kremlin could destroy voter trust.
The announcement comes as top election officials nationwide are coming together in Philadelphia to talk about Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Hogan said he has not heard back from the Department of Homeland Security yet to see if they’ll take on the state investigation.