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Mississippi Secretary of State’s website faces outages due to DDOS attack

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Library Director Jennifer Ramirez works to get her computer operational with assistance from their technology advisers at the public library in Wilmer, Texas, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019. Cyberattacks that recently crippled nearly two dozen Texas cities, including Wilmer, have put other local governments on guard. Ramirez said that currently only one computer is operational at the library. 
 (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

A state-ran website that houses election information is believed to have been the victim of a cyber-attack. 

Mississippi Secretary of State’s website faces outages due to DDOS attack

Lacey Alexander


The Mississippi Secretary of State's website saw periodic outages on Tuesday while midterm voting was taking place. A press release from the Secretary's office stated that a large increase in traffic due to a "distributed denial-of-service" or DDoS attack caused the website to go down a few times. This is a cyber-attack where the perpetrator attempts to make a website and its services inaccessible. 

The outage prevented Mississippians from getting poling info they may have needed, but Assistant Secretary of State Elizabeth Holbert Jonson says the voter information hotline was utilized and managed very well. She also said she wants to assure voters that their information was protected.

“We want to continue to reassure Mississippians… your votes are safe,” Jonson says. “It had nothing to do with our election system.”

Jonson says that while they cannot pinpoint exactly who the attackers were, the main priority is to make sure it doesn't happen again.

“From this point, it’s… how do we proceed, moving forward, to continue to keep Mississippians’ election information safe.”

Secretary of State Michael Watson released a statement Wednesday saying the Mississippi Department of Information Technology Services worked diligently in resolving the issue.