The Election Auditor Has Made Controversial Statements In The Past | Arizona Politics
PHOENIX (CBS 5 / 3TV) – This was the news expected by Trump supporters. Auditors had found evidence that election officials in Maricopa County had deleted voter records.
Arizona’s audit of 2020 election resumes after week of hiatus
The claim grabbed national headlines and prompted a statement from former President Donald Trump. “The entire Maricopa County Arizona database has been DELETED,” the former president wrote.
The problem is, the claim was incorrect. The man who originally made the statement admitted that he was able to recover the database in question. County officials said it was proof listeners didn’t know what they were doing.
The man at the center of this claim, Ben Cotton, has found himself at the center of a political storm. But a look at his professional history shows he’s been there before.
Cotton is the founder of a digital security company called “CyFIR, LLC”. He is based in Virginia. According to descriptions found online, the company helps businesses defend themselves against hackers and recover from malicious attacks online.
In 2015, Cotton claimed to be the first to detect one of the biggest data breaches in federal government history. Hackers had accessed the files of more than 4 million federal government employees.
Federal investigators did not dispute that Cotton and his hacking detection technology identified the breach. But they concluded that government investigators were already aware of the hack and were monitoring it.
Cotton has become a hero to Republicans in Congress because they accused the Obama administration of being lax on Internet security.
SEC documents show that Cotton filed documents to raise funds for his business in 2018. The documents indicate that the company, CyFIR, had no income at the time and that Cotton was hoping to raise $ 10 million. .
Last week, in a meeting with the President of the Arizona State Senate, Cotton reconsidered his claim that voter records had been deleted from the Maricopa County computer system. “Subsequently, I recovered all of these deleted files and have access to this data,” Cotton said.
In April, Cotton submitted an affidavit to Michigan court, stating that it had found vulnerabilities in polling computers. A judge dismissed this case.
CyFIR officials did not respond to requests for comment on this story.
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