FBI: Some US voter databases may have been hacked

The White House says federal officials may step in to secure state voting systems after the FBI said hackers have breached voter databases in some states.

WASHINGTON - The FBI says it has found breaches in voter registration systems in both Illinois and Arizona, and it urged US states to increase their computer security ahead of the November presidential election.

Much of the information in voter files is publicly accessible, and officials say attempts to access the files aren't necessarily aimed at manipulating votes.

But the news comes as US intelligence officials have become increasingly worried that hackers sponsored by other countries might try to disrupt the election.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest says that has prompted the administration to debate whether federal officials should step in to ensure the security of the systems.

"There been a discussion about whether or not to designate certain voting systems, that are of course maintained at the state and local level as pieces of critical infrastructure, and that would give the federal government, an expert at the federal government more of a role in assisting the administrators of those networks as they deter intrusions."

The FBI alert about the data breaches did not identify the intruders, but security experts say recent breaches at the Democratic Party were probably carried out by people within the Russian government.

Kremlin officials have denied the allegations.