Four senior aides at the National Republican Congressional Committee had their email hacked during the 2018 election, Politico reveals, calling it a "major" cyberattack. The hack exposed thousands of sensitive emails from the House GOP's campaign arm, three senior party officials say. The hack went on for several months before it was detected in April; the FBI was alerted and is investigating, but neither House Republican leaders nor rank-and-file House Republicans were told about the attack until Politico got in touch Monday with questions, the site says. "The NRCC can confirm that it was the victim of a cyber intrusion by an unknown entity," a committee spokesperson confirmed to the Washington Post after Politico's story came out.
Committee officials said they withheld information about the attack initially because they didn't want to hamper their own investigation into determining who was responsible. But it's still not clear who was behind the attack or whether a foreign government was involved, though party officials say they privately believe a foreign agent was responsible. One person familiar with the incident says the culprit was "sophisticated, based on their tactics and methods." Donor information was not compromised, and none of the information accessed during the breach has been made public. The Post notes the breach is similar to the one the Democratic National Committee suffered in 2016. (But in that instance the information was passed to WikiLeaks and made public.)