Politics & Government

Russian Hackers Targeted Dallas County Servers Before Election

And they couldn't get in? Hm.

I saw this Morning News story last night right before putting on my Scrooge jammies and nightcap and going to bed. Quick sum up:

Russian hackers took aim at Dallas County’s Web servers, possibly trying to access voter registration rolls, before the November presidential election, officials said Wednesday.

“They didn’t infiltrate our system,” said Toni Pippins-Poole, the county’s elections administrator. “They couldn’t get in.”

I threw up a gut-reaction joke tweet, but I was still thinking about it this morning. They couldn’t get in — really?

In Dallas, where less than three months ago someone hacked the entire emergency warning siren system without even using a computer? You are telling me — and I am addressing Toni Pippins-Poole here, not the story’s writer — that Russian hackers couldn’t get into a web server in Dallas County, where I would 100-percent believe whatever archaic sub-Commodore 64 system you told me they were using? Like, if you texted me a photo of a circa-1996 Dell plugged into an overloaded power strip that was plugged into another overloaded power strip in some dank corner of a janitor closet and it was literally sparking and said this is the server, I wouldn’t question it for even a fraction of a second and would just write back lol of course and maybe a crying laughing emoji.

Here, in Dallas County, where almost nothing works the way it is supposed to and hasn’t for some time, you are telling me Russian hackers could not infiltrate a web server? For real? I … guess.



  • Fake news.

    Basing the source of a port scan (which is all it sounds like here) on the IP address is like basing your investigation of the origin of a threatening letter on the return address label.

    No one doing anything of any sophistication does it from their own IP, just like no one mailing a threat puts their own address as the return address.

    • Mavdog

      You are incorrect. The tools are out there. Trace Route. Treasuremap. The NSA has tools to find the path of the packets.

  • Jim Schutze

    Zac, maybe you are the nation’s savior in this hour of digital peril. Could it be that you have put your finger on the one defense that all the little technoid nerdy no-deodorant-wearing hacker smart-alecks can never penetrate? The Dallas County Solution? The totally incompetent bottomlessly corrupt insanely obsolete strategy?

    • Happy Bennett

      Funny- I was thinking the same thing. Wasn’t this the same county election administration that didn’t have an organized system for keeping track of mail requests for ballots?