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Illinois protecting against Russian election tampering

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By SARAH ZIMMERMAN
Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois' elections director says the state is taking steps to limit the possibility of Russian interference in the March 20 primary election.

Steven Sandvoss, who heads the State Board of Elections, said Wednesday that the state is testing voting equipment and looking for vulnerabilities in the online registration system.

The Department of Homeland Security says Russian agents targeted elections systems in 21 states ahead of the 2016 election, including Illinois'. Hackers accessed online voter registration records of 76,000 active voters. The elections board notified them by mail.

Sandvoss says federal officials told him this month that the Russians likely will try again.

The state requested in January a detailed federal assessment on its system's vulnerabilities. Sandvoss could not say if the assessment will be ready before the March election.

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