A majority of U.S. states has adopted technology that allows the federal government to see inside state computer systems managing voter data or voting devices in order to root out hackers. Two years after Russian hackers breached voter registration databases in Illinois and Arizona, most states have begun using the government-approved equipment, according to three sources with knowledge of the deployment. Voter registration databases are used to verify the identity of voters when they visit polling stations. The rapid adoption of the so-called Albert sensors, a $5,000 piece of hardware developed by the Center for Internet Security www.cisecurity.org, illustrates the broad concern shared by state government officials ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, government cybersecurity experts told Reuters.
CIS is a nonprofit organization based in East Greenbush, N.Y., that helps governments, businesses and organization fight computer intrusions.
“We’ve recently added Albert sensors to our system because I believe voting systems have tremendous vulnerabilities that we need to plug; but also the voter registration systems are a concern,” said Neal Kelley, chief of elections for Orange County, California.
“That’s one of the things I lose sleep about: It’s what can we do to protect voter registration systems?”