Despite assurances from the U.S. intelligence community that Russian hacking only influenced the 2016 U.S. election—and didn’t change vote tallies—there was never actually a formal federal audit of those systems, the Department of Homeland Security said. And while DHS offered free security scans to any state that wanted them, many states—even ones that took up the DHS offer, like Michigan and Maine—either use audit procedures that are considered inadequate or don’t audit their election results at all. “I think there’s a presumption amongst both the general public and lawmakers that DHS did some sort of investigation,” said Susan Greenhalgh, who serves as Elections Specialist at Verified Voting, a nonprofit devoted to U.S. election integrity. “It didn’t happen. That doesn’t mean that something happened, but it also means it wasn’t investigated.”
… DHS’s role in state, county, and local voting systems, a spokesperson admitted to the Daily Beast, was limited. “No. In the months leading up to the election, DHS made its cybersecurity services available to state, county and local officials,” a spokesperson said when asked if the agency conducted a federal audit—DHS didn’t verify vote counts or vote tabulation systems.
“That is a very carefully parsed sentence,” Greenhalgh said. “It doesn’t say ‘we observed everything’ or even ‘we observed vote tallying systems ourselves.’”
Only about half of states, according Verified Voting, actually use what’s called a voter-verified paper audit trail, a system in which voters get a paper receipt confirming their choice. That’s essential for a state to conduct a statistically significant audit that’s guaranteed to be independent from the many possible errors that can come from electronic voting machines, Greenhalgh said.
Full Article: DHS Never Ran Audit to See if Votes Were Hacked.