“The whole situation is unprecedented,” DeSantis spokesperson Helen Ferré acknowledged.
The Russian effort to target Florida has been known for some time, but details have been sparse. In March, the state was singled out in special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russian interference in the 2016 elections, which concluded that at least one county in Florida had been breached. The disclosure stunned Florida officials, who had maintained that the effort was unsuccessful and were working to shore up security ahead of 2020.
DeSantis said that the “intrusion” by Russian hackers did not affect any vote tallying, which is handled on a completely different system. He also said there is no evidence that the hackers were successful in altering any of the data that they accessed.
“There was no manipulation, or anything, but there was voter data that was able to be got,” DeSantis said.