The National Republican Congressional Committee was hacked this election cycle, it admitted Tuesday afternoon.
“The NRCC can confirm that it was the victim of a cyber intrusion by an unknown entity. The cybersecurity of the Committee’s data is paramount, and upon learning of the intrusion, the NRCC immediately launched an internal investigation and notified the FBI, which is now investigating the matter,” NRCC spokesman Ian Prior said in a statement. “To protect the integrity of that investigation, the NRCC will offer no further comment on the incident.”
The major breach included thousands of emails from four senior aides, according to Politico, which first reported the hacks. An outside vendor noticed and alerted the committee in April. The committee then launched an internal investigation and alerted the FBI.
According to the report, no one at the NRCC alerted outgoing House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), incoming House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) or anyone else in House GOP leadership. NRCC officials told Politico that was to try to keep the information close to the vest to make it easier to investigate and avoid alerting the hackers that they’d been detected. They believe a foreign agent was behind the hacks. No information from the emails was used publicly, according to Politico.
The NRCC also, as has been previously reported, balked in negotiations with officials at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee that would have kept both sides from using any hacked materials.