State and local election systems remain vulnerable to outside attacks ahead of the upcoming midterm elections, House Democrats warned in a new report obtained by ABC News. The final report issued by the Congressional Task Force on Election Security, a Democratic working group formed last summer by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., calls for increased federal resources to protect local and state election systems and replace aging infrastructure and new regulations to help election technology vendors to improve security. The House Democratic effort is being released after the nation’s top intelligence officials Tuesday warned in a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing that Russia is actively working to interfere in the 2018 elections.
“Russia perceives its past efforts as successful and views the 2018 U.S. midterm elections as a potential target for Russian influence operations,” Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats testified Tuesday. “Throughout the entire community, we have not seen any evidence of any significant change from last year.”
The report also identified Russia, North Korea, China and Iran as the foreign state actors that pose the greatest threat to U.S. election systems, based on capabilities and past cyberactivity, and called on the White House to take the threat posed by Russian meddling more seriously.
“We need a strong, consisted rebuke from the White House,” the report reads, adding that the president should support a “9/11-style” commission to study Russian efforts and develop plans to confront them.