In addition to peddling fake news and hacking into email systems, Russia apparently tried but failed to interfere with the machinery of 2016 U.S. elections. No votes were changed, as far as we know, but Russian hackers attempted to invade election systems in 21 states and succeeded in penetrating Illinois’ voter registration database. The U.S. intelligence community believes that the Russians — and others — will keep trying to interfere with U.S. elections, not only through the dissemination of disinformation but also with continued attacks on computer systems. Testifying before Congress earlier this year about election security, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats warned that “the United States is under attack.”
Better late than never, Congress is responding to the threat from foreign hackers and targeting other weaknesses in the so-called election infrastructure. That includes not only voting machines but also computer systems used in the tabulation and reporting of results and for voter registration.
Last month, both the Senate and the House Intelligence committees called for new initiatives to protect elections from interference, and several senators, including California’s Kamala Harris, unveiled an updated version of the Secure Elections Act. That measure would create a federal-state advisory panel to develop a set of guidelines for election cybersecurity and establish a grant program to help states improve their procedures.
Full Article: Protect our elections from Russian (and other) threats.