Amber McReynolds, director of elections in Denver and Scott Cardenas, chief information officer for the city and county of Denver, attributed the centralization of the city’s IT services as one of the most important factors securing Denver elections. Over the past nine years, centralization and collaboration have increased expertise in elections from one person to five, according to GCN.com. “We can have year-round conversations on the expectations and needs, so by the time that election night rolls around we can have a fairly smooth process,” Cardenas, who oversees more than 50 local agencies, said during an October 4th cybersecurity roundtable hosted and moderated by U.S. Election Assistance Commission.
The purpose of the roundtable was to share information and best practices in how to secure elections under the emerging threats to election cybersecurity by nation states.
McReynolds, who has administered Denver elections for more than 12 years, and Cardenas discussed how they are leveraging technologies like the city and county’s 311 service, as well as other network infrastructure and applications, to create a secure elections strategy.
It’s essential to have visibility into the tools, “to know if someone has entered into the environment,” and writing the scripts for a specific response to be ready when elections are imminent, said Cardenas.