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Voters in Alaska, Pennsylvania, Arizona and Florida on Tuesday obtained threatening emails supposedly despatched by the Proud Boys, a far-right group, telling them to vote for US President Donald Trump.
In response to a report by Florida Right now, the emails seem to come back from the handle email@example.com.
“We’re in possession of all of your info. You’re presently registered as a Democrat and we all know this as a result of now we have gained entry into your complete voting infrastructure. You’ll vote for Trump on Election Day or we are going to come after you,” learn one such message, obtained by Florida Right now.
“Change your celebration affiliation to Republican to tell us you obtained our message and can comply. We are going to know which candidate you voted for. I might take this significantly if I have been you.”
Voter intimidation is a federal offense that may be punished with a one-year jail sentence. Up to now, the emails seem to have solely focused registered Democratic voters.
As of Tuesday afternoon, the area for the sender’s e-mail, officialproudboys.com, was inactive. Nevertheless, the positioning does appear to have been beforehand affiliated with the Proud Boys group.
In response to WUFT, Max Zinkus, a pc scientist at Johns Hopkins College, analyzed the routing info from one of many emails and stated that it might be traced to a pc server in Saudi Arabia. He additionally stated that the e-mail appeared to have been created on a administration interface used on older net servers with software program vulnerabilities ceaselessly exploited by hackers.
“It’s additionally doable that somebody compromised a tool and used it to connect with this Saudi server, or compromised the Saudi server itself, or each,” Zinkus defined.
Proud Boys chairman Enrique Tarrio informed WUFT that his group didn’t ship the emails.
“We don’t do mass emails. That is undoubtedly, undoubtedly not us,” Tarrio stated, including that the group has by no means been concerned in voter intimidation.
“It’s simply by no means been a factor,” he famous.
“We now have spoken to the FBI and are working with them. I hope whoever did that is arrested for voter intimidation and for maliciously impersonating our group,” he added, The Hill reported.
Chris Krebbs, head of the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Safety Company, confirmed on Twitter Tuesday that the company was conscious of the emails. “These emails are supposed to intimidate and undermine American voters’ confidence in our elections,” Krebbs tweeted.
Trump confronted criticism in late September in the course of the first presidential debate when he informed the Proud Boys to “stand again and stand by” when he was requested in regards to the group. The next day, Trump stated the group ought to “stand down” and let legislation enforcement do its work.