U.S. says no evidence foreign meddling impacted 2018 elections

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Top U.S. officials said on Tuesday that foreign actors did not significantly influence the 2018 congressional elections, despite reports of hacking attempts leading up to the November election.

The statement by the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security stands in contrast to the 2016 presidential election, which U.S. officials say was the target of a sophisticated Russian hacking and propaganda campaign.

The two agencies said the U.S. government has found no evidence that foreign governments or agents had an impact last November, when Democrats won control of the House of Representatives. Neither political campaigns nor electronic voting machines or other infrastructure was significantly affected, they said in a joint statement. They declined to provide further detail.

RELATED: Senate Intelligence Committee review of Russian election meddling  

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Senate Intelligence Committee's review of Russian election meddling
Members of the Senate Intelligence Committee gather ahead of a press conference previewing the committee's findings on Russian election meddling at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, March 20, 2018. The U.S. needs to do more -- and quickly -- to prevent a repeat of hacking into voting systems by Russians or others ahead of this year's midterm elections, the Senate Intelligence Committee warned. Photographer: Toya Sarno Jordan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) arrives for a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing evaluating the Intelligence Community Assessment on "Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 16, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) speaks to the media as she leaves a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing evaluating the Intelligence Community Assessment on "Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 16, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) arrives for a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing evaluating the Intelligence Community Assessment on "Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 16, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) speaks to the media as he arrives for a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing evaluating the Intelligence Community Assessment on "Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 16, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Former NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers departs from a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing evaluating the Intelligence Community Assessment on "Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 16, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Former Director of National Intelligence (DNI) James Clapper departs from a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing evaluating the Intelligence Community Assessment on "Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 16, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Senator Mark Warner, a Democrat from Virginia and ranking member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, center right, speaks during a press conference previewing the committee's findings on Russian election meddling at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, March 20, 2018. The U.S. needs to do more -- and quickly -- to prevent a repeat of hacking into voting systems by Russians or others ahead of this year's midterm elections, the Senate Intelligence Committee warned. Photographer: Toya Sarno Jordan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Senator Richard Burr, a Republican from North Carolina and chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, center, speaks during a press conference previewing the committee's findings on Russian election meddling at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, March 20, 2018. The U.S. needs to do more -- and quickly -- to prevent a repeat of hacking into voting systems by Russians or others ahead of this year's midterm elections, the Senate Intelligence Committee warned. Photographer: Toya Sarno Jordan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Senator Mark Warner, a Democrat from Virginia and ranking member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, takes notes ahead of a press conference previewing the committee's findings on Russian election meddling at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, March 20, 2018. The U.S. needs to do more -- and quickly -- to prevent a repeat of hacking into voting systems by Russians or others ahead of this year's midterm elections, the Senate Intelligence Committee warned. Photographer: Toya Sarno Jordan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
US Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen and former Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson (R) testify about election security during a Senate Select Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, March 21, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee Richard Burr (R-NC) and the committee's vice chairman Senator Mark Warner (D-VA)(2nd L) stand with members of the committee as they speak to the media about the committee's findings and recommendations on threats to election infrastructure on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee Richard Burr (R-NC) and the committee's vice chairman Senator Mark Warner (D-VA)(R) and Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) stand before speaking about the committee's findings and recommendations on threats to election infrastructure on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Donald Trump Jr., the president's son, takes a bathroom break after nearly two hours before the Senate Intelligence Committee, as part of the panel?s ongoing investigation of allegations of Russia?s interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., December 13, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Donald Trump Jr., the president's son, departs after a full day being interviewed by Senate Intelligence Committee staff, as part of the panel?s ongoing investigation of allegations of Russia?s interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S. December 13, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Senators look at a placard presented as evidence of Russian social media manipulation, during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing to answer questions related to Russian use of social media to influence U.S. elections, on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., November 1, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
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The National Republican Congressional Committee, which works to elect Republican candidates, said it was the target of a hacking attempt last year.

U.S. prosecutors are investigating whether Donald Trump's campaign worked with the Kremlin to win the 2016 election. Trump denies any collusion, and Moscow has also denied involvement.

U.S. intelligence officials warned last week that Russia and China are already targeting the 2020 presidential election. (Reporting by Tim Ahmann and Susan Heavey; Editing by Mohammad Zargham and David Gregorio)

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