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A Brazilian hacker claims Bolsonaro asked him to hack into the voting system ahead of 2022 vote | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #hacker

A Brazilian hacker claims that former President Jair Bolsonaro asked him to hack one of the country’s electronic voting system to expose the system’s alleged weaknesses ahead of the 2022 presidential election

Walter Delgatti Neto did not provide any evidence for his claim to the parliamentary commission of inquiry. But his detailed testimony raises new allegations against the former far-right leader, investigated for his role in the Jan. 8 riots in the capital city of Brasilia.

Delgatti also told lawmakers that he met in person with Bolsonaro and told the former president it was not possible for him to hack the electronic voting system.

The Associated Press has reached out to Bolsonaro’s lawyers who have not yet responded. Bolsonaro has denied any wrongdoings.

Bolsonaro’s political nemesis, leftist Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, won the Oct. 30, 2022 election with just 50.9% of the votes.

According to Delgatti, Bolsonaro had wanted the attempted hack to convince some voters that the country’s voting system was not reliable. Delhgatti also said he was promised a presidential pardon in case he ended up being investigated for his actions.

Bolsonaro had long stoked belief among his hardcore supporters that the nation’s electronic voting system was prone to fraud, though he never presented any evidence.

In June, a panel of judges concluded that Bolsonaro abused his power to cast unfounded doubts on the country’s electronic voting system and barred him from running for office again until 2030.

During Thursday’s hearing, Bolsonaro’s allies in the commission questioned Delegatti’s credibility.

In 2015, Delegatti was jailed for lying about being a federal police investigator. Two years later, he was investigated for allegedly forging documents, which he denies. Several people have also accused him of embezzlement — allegations that resurfaced during Thursday’s hearing.

In Brazil, witnesses caught lying before a parliamentary commissions of inquiry — more commonly known under its Portuguese acronym CPI — can be imprisoned, according to Luis Claudio Araujo, a law professor at Ibmec University in Rio de Janeiro.

Members of parliamentary commissions have the power to investigate, but also pass on information to prosecutors and federal police, Araujo said.

The congressional hearing adds to the numerous legal headaches facing Bolsonaro for activities during his term in office.

Federal police earlier this month alleged that Bolsonaro received cash from the nearly $70,000 sale of two luxury watches he received as gifts from Saudi Arabia while in office. Officers raided the homes and offices of several people purportedly involved in the case, including a four-star army general. Bolsonaro has denied any wrongdoing involving the gifts.

“It is shocking this somewhat amateurism and naïveté of Bolsonaro’s political group in congress,” said Creomar de Souza, founder of political risk consultancy Dharma Politics. “So much material is documented and they insist they can control the interpretation of the facts and insist in keeping this congressional probe working.”


Associated Press writer Mauricio Savarese in Sao Paulo contributed to this report.


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