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  4. Joint Statement from the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security Assessing the Impact of Foreign Interference During the 2022 U.S. Mid-Term Election

Joint Statement from the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security Assessing the Impact of Foreign Interference During the 2022 U.S. Mid-Term Election

Release Date: December 18, 2023

No Evidence that Any Foreign Government-Affiliated Actor Compromised the Security or Integrity of Any Election Infrastructure in the 2022 Federal Elections

WASHINGTON – The Department of Justice (DOJ), including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), released today a report with key findings and recommendations from a classified joint report to the President issued earlier this year on addressing the impact of foreign governments and their agents on the security and integrity of the infrastructure relied upon in the 2022 U.S. federal elections. The declassified report is consistent with CISA’s November 2022 statement on the security of the 2022 mid-term election and reaffirms that the departments found no evidence that any foreign government-affiliated actor compromised the security or integrity of any election infrastructure.

The report was developed pursuant to section 1(b) of Executive Order 13848, Imposing Certain Sanctions in the Event of Foreign Influence in a United States Election (the E.O.), issued on September 12, 2018, and relies upon a classified assessment of the 2022 federal election that was prepared by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), pursuant to section 1(a) of the E.O. The DOJ and DHS release of the declassified 1(b) report follows ODNI’s release of a declassified version of the 1(a) report on December 18, 2023. The section 1(a) report, as required by the E.O., assesses information indicating that a foreign government, or any person acting as an agent of or on behalf of a foreign government, has acted with the intent or purpose of interfering in the 2022 U.S. federal election, but it does not assess the impact of any such efforts on the outcome of the election. In contrast, the section 1(b) report analyzes the extent to which foreign interference targeting election infrastructure or infrastructure of, or pertaining to, political organizations, candidates, or campaigns, materially affected the security or integrity of that infrastructure, the tabulation of votes, or the timely transmission of election results. The section 1(b) report does not address the impact of efforts to sway voters or influence opinion.

While the government detected some foreign government-affiliated and criminal cyber activity targeting election infrastructure, including activity by suspected People’s Republic of China cyber actors and activity claimed by pro-Russian hacktivists, there is no evidence that this activity prevented voting, changed votes, or disrupted the ability to tally votes or to transmit election results in a timely manner; altered any technical aspect of the voting process; or otherwise compromised the integrity of voter registration information or any ballots cast during the 2022 federal elections.

Additional identified activity involved Russian, Iranian, and Chinese government-affiliated cyber actors scanning and, in some instances, accessing political campaign infrastructure, that is, information and communications technology and systems used by, on behalf of, or closely associated with a political organization, campaign, or candidate. However, there is no evidence that any information obtained through such activity was used in any foreign influence operation or was otherwise deployed, modified, or destroyed.

During the 2022 Federal election cycle, federal, state, local, and territorial governments, as well as private sector partners, worked together to improve cybersecurity, partnerships, and public messaging that enhanced the security and resilience of election infrastructure. The section 1(b) report includes recommendations to continue such efforts throughout the 2024 Federal election cycle.

DOJ and DHS remain committed to continuously strengthening the nation’s cybersecurity, critical infrastructure, supply chain risk management, public-private partnerships, and election literacy to enhance the resiliency of our democratic institutions ahead of the 2024 Federal election cycle.


Last Updated: 12/19/2023
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