German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives for the weekly cabinet meeting at the Chancellery in Berlin on December 9, 2016.
Odd Andersen—AFP/Getty Images
December 12, 2016 11:18 AM EST

Russian hackers may attempt to influence the 2017 election in Germany, according to members of the German parliament.

The 2017 election of members and leadership of the Bundestag, Germany’s federal parliament, could be threatened by “outside manipulation,” said a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party Wolfgang Bosbach, the BBC reports. As Merkel runs for a fourth term in the election, Bosbach and other MPs voiced their concerns in response to 2015 hack into Parliament and an internet outage that affected Germans last week.

“There is a general danger—for the Bundestag 2017 election too—of influence-peddling via targeted infiltration from outside, with the goal of manipulating facts or opinions,” Bosbach told German news source Koelner Stadt-Anzeiger when he was asked about Russian hackers potentially influencing the U.S. election, according to the BBC.

Russian intelligence said that a May 2015 hack into the German parliament’s computer network was likely the work of Russian intelligence, the New York Times reports. Many were spooked further last week when 900,000 Germans were temporarily disconnected from their internet and phone services.

The German Social Democrats foreign affairs spokesperson, Rolf Muetzenich, also perceived a threat. “Unfortunately we cannot exclude such activities in Germany, either,” Muetzenich said, the BBC reports. “In the election campaign we’ll also have to confront distortions and fake stories.”



More Must-Read Stories From TIME

Write to Julia Zorthian at

Read More From TIME
You May Also Like