Amid intensified focus on election cybersecurity, South Carolina’s top government lawyers have advised the state’s election agency that it does not need to publicly release documents about how it is protecting voting systems. Citing a “significant increase” in open records requests about cybersecurity, State Election Commission Director Marci Andino requested an opinion from Attorney General Alan Wilson’s office about whether cybersecurity matters fall under an exception to the law that excludes information relating to “security plans and devices.” Assistant Attorney General Matthew Houck responded in an opinion that a court likely would find that the security plans exemption would apply to cybersecurity infrastructure, allowing the agency to withhold documents about the state’s protection systems.
However, Houck added that the agency’s spending amounts for the implementation of any cybersecurity plans or devices would still be subject to public release. Attorney general opinions are advisory and not binding in court.
… Asked about the opinion at a Statehouse hearing Tuesday, Andino said the agency has received requests for information about cybersecurity from both inside and outside the state.