The email popped into Georgia Elections Director Chris Harvey’s in-box one Monday morning in August, with four sparse lines punctuated by a smiley face and a YouTube link. “I know you have been asked,” Columbia County Elections Director Nancy Gay wrote of the video, which poll workers, the public and elections officials alike had shared over fears it meant trouble for the November election. “I would love to know your response.” A steady stream of questions about the security of the state’s voting systems has come to the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office over the past two months, according to a review of records by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. That includes the video shared by Gay on Aug. 22, just days after the FBI’s cyber division warned states that it was investigating incidents related to elections data systems in two states believed to be Arizona and Illinois.
The video shows a snippet from a 2006 documentary called “Hacking Democracy.” In it, a hacker is able to access a voting machine similar to some of those used in Georgia and alter its results. Five days earlier, Cherokee County Elections Director Kim Stancil had sent Harvey the same link.
While Georgia officials have sought to assure voters about the measures they have taken to minimize any threat, it’s clearly a worry for some Georgians.
“I’m writing to express my concern about Georgia’s continued use of electronic machines that lack a paper backup,” Decatur resident Jacob Selwood wrote in an Aug. 7 email. “We are one of only five states that still do this. A recent article in Politico pointed to how easy it is to hack the machines that we use, and without a backup paper trail there is no way to tell if that has happened.”
Full Article: Election security questions in Georgia | www.myajc.com.