Oregon secretary of state contacts FBI over website hacking

PORTLAND, Ore -- More than two weeks after the Oregon secretary of state's office said it detected and stopped an intrusion into the agency's website, the breach could now be the subject of a federal investigation.

Spokesman for the secretary of state's office, Tony Green, told the On Your Side Investigators that the agency reached out to the FBI after its campaign finance portion of the website was compromised in early February. They also contacted the Oregon State Police, which investigates cybercrimes.

"This appears to be an orchestrated intrusion from a foreign entity and not the result of any employee activities," according to the agency's website.

On Feb. 5 Secretary of State Kate Brown announced the website had possibly been hacked and that candidates' bank account information was among the data accessed. As a precaution, the agency temporarily shut down their online systems including the state's online campaign finance reporting system, ORESTAR, as well as the Central Business Registry.

"Most of the information on our website is public -- campaign finance reporting, business registry," Green said via email to KATU. "We don't store complete credit card number. At this point, we do not believe any financial information was compromised."

The secretary of state's office did not say when the downed portions of the website would be up again but said employees are "working long hours to bring these services back online" and their "primary focus is to make sure this intrusion can't be repeated."

The Oregon Centralized Voter Registry (OCVR) is on a separate system and was not affected.

KATU received word from tipsters that other state sites could have been targeted as well. The On Your Side Investigators also contacted OSP but a spokesman said he has not heard of other state sites that have been compromised.

The Secretary of State provided this Q & A:

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