Somebody robbed the Republicans. Hackers phished their way into the Wisconsin Republican Party and ran off with $2.3 million dollars they need to pay for last minute political ads in the hotly contested state.
Wisconsin Republicans ‘digitally penetrated’ by hackers
On Thursday, Andrew Hitt, who serves as chairman of the Wisconsin Republican Party, dialed up a reporter at Associated Press to report the robbery.
They discovered that their security had been digitally penetrated by hackers last Thursday but didn’t call the FBI until Friday. Before they unplugged their server, $2.3 million was misdirected into cyberspace. The feds are following the bits and bytes to try to find where the money went.
According to the limited statement issued by Chairman Hitt, the GOP first noticed “suspicious activity” on October 22. They sat on the information until the next day before calling in the Federal Bureau of Instigation, who will immediately blame it on Russian hackers.
“There’s no doubt RPW is now at a disadvantage with that money being gone,” Hitt confirms. “The party and campaign needs money late in the race to make quick decisions.” With images popping like popcorn out of Hunter Biden’s laptop, it’s imperative that the voters get to look at images of Malia Obama’s coked up credit card before they go to the polls.
As explained by Hitt, “the hackers were able to manipulate invoices from four vendors.” Legitimate businesses who “were being paid to send out direct mail for Trump’s reelection efforts and to provide pro-Trump material such as hats that could be handed out to supporters” turned in invoices for the goods and services.
Hackers stole $2.3 million from the Wisconsin Republican Party's account that was being used to help reelect President Donald Trump in the key battleground state, the party's chairman says https://t.co/sXdvr3dLa6
— POLITICO (@politico) October 29, 2020
One slipped through the cracks
The invoices themselves “were altered so when the party paid them, the money went to the hackers instead of the vendors.” The GOP managed to figure out that “the attack began as a phishing attempt.”
No matter how many times you warn all the employees not to open suspicious attachments, the black-hats are persistent. Hitt noted in his statement, “the national party had warned state parties about potential cyberattacks, but unfortunately, one slipped through the cracks.”
Nobody noticed that the hackers slipped their fingers into the files until “someone noticed that an invoice was generated that should not have been.” Now they have to figure out who all didn’t get paid who should have been, and pay them. The good news is that “It does not appear that any data was stolen,” party spokesman Alec Zimmerman assures.
The news about the GOP digital robbery comes hot on the heels of another massive cybercrime. Hackers have injected ransomware into the computer networks of at least five major U.s. Healthcare systems.
The FBI issued a bulletin Wednesday with an “urgent warning” that “continued ransomware attacks” are aimed at infecting Healthcare and Public Health Sector systems with “Ryuk ransomware.”
The FBI goes on to warn, “CISA, FBI, and HHS have credible information of an increased and imminent cybercrime threat to U.S. hospitals and healthcare providers” and urge “healthcare providers to ensure that they take timely and reasonable precautions to protect their networks from these threats.”