America’s presidential election is not only a constitutional right, it’s a symbol of the country’s freedom. But in the wake of data breaches that have pimpled the last few years–in both corporate America and political campaigns–government intelligence and cybersecurity experts are warning that November’s presidential election is next on the list for a large-scale hack. In late August, Yahoo broke news that foreign hackers had breached the state Board of Elections websites in Illinois and Arizona, which the FBI’s cyber division followed up with an alert to election officials across the nation to increase voting system security. Earlier this year, hackers breached the Democratic National Committee’s network, leaking emails that led to the resignation of DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz the night before Hillary Clinton accepted the presidential nomination. And last month, hackers released emails belonging to Colin Powell, the Republican former secretary of state under George W. Bush.
Hackers could pose a threat come November elections, said Mark Graff, founder of cybersecurity company Tellagraff and the former chief information security officer for Nasdaq, during his keynote speech at the New York Institute of Technology’s Annual Cybersecurity Conference last week. “Russian intelligence has operated disinformation campaigns to undermine the fate of the electorate in former Soviet states like the Ukraine and Estonia,” he said.
When it comes to the mechanics of voting in the U.S., there are some major flaws. According to a 2015 study by the Brennan Center for Justice, 43 states will use electronic voting machines in November’s election that are at least 10 years old. Another 14 states will use voting machines that have been in use for 15 years or longer. Almost every state will use some machines that are no longer in production, and replacement parts for them are difficult to find. Like any other old piece of firmware or software, these old machines are more vulnerable to hackers.
The report also gave details about a two-year-old warning from the Presidential Commission on Election Administration, a bipartisan organization, that described the state of America’s aging voting system as an “impending crisis.”
Full Article: How Hackers Could Affect the Presidential Election | Inc.com.