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Laptop, USB Drives Stolen from Pennsylvania Election Warehouse

Election officials say the warehouse used to store voting machines was burglarized earlier this week. Officials say there is little to no risk that the stolen computer and drives will lead to voter fraud or manipulation.

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Shutterstock/Alexander Kirch
(TNS) — Watergate began with an election-motivated break-in and burglary. Could this be another one?

A company that supplies voting machines to Philadelphia was broken into and an employee’s laptop and data-filled USB drives were stolen, as 6ABC is Philly reports:

The burglary happened Tuesday night at a warehouse on the 3500 block of Scotts Lane in the city’s East Falls section.

However, officials are saying there is little to no risk that the stolen computer and drives will lead to voter fraud or manipulation in the all-important swing state of Pa.

Officials tell 6ABC the stolen laptop did not have any election materials on it and isn’t capable of programming election machines. Moreover, the stolen USB drives are encrypted and contain multiple levels of security to protect the sensitive data they contain, officials say.

Nick Custodio, the deputy commissioner for Chairwoman Lisa Deeley, who oversees elections in the city, said in statement that the laptop has security features to prevent unauthorized access and the user account has been disabled.

The employee’s corporate network user account was changed and the device address was blocked and passwords were changed, officials added.

Anyone with any information on the break-in is asked to call Philly police at 215-686-TIPS.

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