A database of several million American voters’ personal information has appeared on the Russian dark web two months ahead of presidential elections clouded by claims of Russian meddling, Russia’s Kommersant business newspaper reported today. A user nicknamed Gorka9 advertised free access to the personal information of 7.6 million voters in Michigan in an unnamed discussion forum, according to Kommersant. The paper said it has also found databases of between 2 million and 6 million voters in Connecticut, Arkansas, Florida and North Carolina. Infowatch, a software company that provides data security services, confirmed the authenticity of the database to Kommersant. Infowatch said the data leaked online sometime late in 2019.
American voters should view this dataset as being very similar in scope to the publicly accessible voter rolls in their state, or a variant on the data available from any number of past breaches. While such data is undoubtedly being used by some to stir the electoral propaganda pot, voters can best defend against such influence by ignoring proactive communications, such as unsolicited emails and texts. In effect, such attempts at influence should be treated as if it were another spam or potential phishing attempt.