State election officials say that despite millions of cyber attempts to gain access to South Carolina’s voter registration system in the past year, no one has succeeded. But two election watchdogs complain that problems have been discovered and they want to be shown evidence of their severity. … Initial assessments by the S.C. National Guard’s Military Department Defense Cyber Operations and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security done in the wake of the Russian hacking of the presidential election found weaknesses in all county offices and at the state elections agency. The elections agency later hired the Charleston-based cybersecurity firm Soteria to plug the holes. But a USC computer science professor and a Lowcountry elections watchdog want to see the full assessments for themselves. “Every single county has at least a critical or high vulnerability,” said University of South Carolina computer science professor and elections analyst Duncan Buell. “They were not doing the no-brainer things for election security.” The Homeland Security assessment found the same level of vulnerability in servers used by the state agency, he said.
Articles about voting issues in South Carolina.
South Carolina: Voter registration system hit by nearly 150,000 hack attempts on Election Day | International Business Times
South Carolina’s voter registration system was reportedly hit by almost 150,000 hack attempts on Election Day 2016. According to a post-election report by the South Carolina State Election Commission, it is likely that most of the hacking attempts came from automated computer bots, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday (16 July). President Donald Trump comfortably won the state of South Carolina in the November election. However, WSJ reports that there is no evidence to suggest that the attempted cyberattacks targeting the state’s voter registration system were successful.
South Carolina: Nearly 150,000 attempts to hack South Carolina voter registration system on Election Day: report | The Hill
Hackers tried to infiltrate South Carolina’s voter registration system nearly 150,000 times on Election Day 2016, according to a South Carolina State Election Commission report that was reported on by The Wall Street Journal. South Carolina, which President Trump won easily during the election, did not find evidence that would suggest the attempted breaches were successful, the paper reported. The publication said most of the hacking attempts in South Carolina likely came from automated computer bots.
Election officials say South Carolina was not one of the 21 states targeted by cyberattacks before last year’s vote — but they’re moving quickly to find help shoring up their defenses. The State Election Commission is seeking proposals this week for a cybersecurity contractor to identify threats, look for holes in the state’s security and find ways to patch them. Agency spokesman Chris Whitmire said the commission is trying to replace an emergency contract it signed last year as concerns of foreign meddling in the presidential election spread across the country.
Faced with paying to replace five elected officials, and eying a State House corruption probe that could kick out more, the S.C. State Election Commission has decided it needs more cash. The office that runs S.C. elections is seeking permission from state lawmakers to dip into two pots of state money — roughly $255,000 — left over from other election programs. The rare request comes because of concerns about the volume of special elections the commission must bankroll this year. “You never know how many you’re going to have,” Election Commission spokesman Chris Whitmire said. “Someone could die. Someone could be convicted or resign. That’s out of our control.
The S.C. State Election Commission plan to maintain its more than 12,000 voting machines would cost up to $8.8 million. Refreshing the machines would include installing new touch screens, purchasing new batteries, adding new wheels and replacing communication packs. Optical scans that read ballots would also be replaced under the plan. Spartanburg County Registration and Elections Director Henry Laye told area lawmakers on Monday that poll workers have noticed in the past few elections that people have had to punch the screens particularly hard or particularly lightly to get them to work properly.
While voters in North Carolina and Georgia have already started early voting, those in South Carolina can vote now only if they meet one of 15 reasons to vote absentee. But South Carolina lawmakers say they’ll file bills next year to allow early voting in the state. 35 states and the District of Columbia allow no-excuse early voting. Three more states–Colorado, Oregon, and Washington–do all their voting by mail, which eliminates the need for early voting. South Carolina is one of six states with in-person absentee voting, but voters have to meet one of the requirements to vote absentee, like being 65 or older, physically disabled, or unable to vote on Election Day because of work obligations. Mary Mosley voted in-person absentee Tuesday in Columbia because she’s over 65. She hopes lawmakers will pass early voting. “I believe you could get more people to vote if they could come in just any time and vote, instead of having to stand in line for a long time,” she says.
South Carolina: Planning to write-in a vote for president? Think again, South Carolina voters | The Herald
Maybe lawmakers generations ago saw the election of 2016 coming. Maybe they didn’t want to count cartoon characters or dead folks when sorting out candidates for the top job in the country. For whatever reason, they made sure South Carolina voters won’t be straying too far from the pack on election day. Title 7 – Elections, Chapter 13 in South Carolina reads like a phone book. About halfway down is one of the shorter voting rules, but one that could surprise a voter on Nov. 8. It states: “The ballots shall also contain a place for voters to write in the name of any other person for whom they wish to vote, except on ballots for the election of the president and vice President.” So all those next day reports of odd write-in votes nationwide won’t happen in South Carolina. “It varies by state law,” said Wanda Hemphill, registration and elections director for York County.
Students from Furman University will soon learn whether or not they can register to vote in Greenville County. Thursday, a judge heard arguments on a lawsuit claiming they were blocked from registering using their university address. “I hope that we will get a verdict quickly so we will be able to register as many people as possible in the next 36 hours,” said plaintiff, Katherine West. The clock ticks down on voter registration deadline, but for the Furman sophomore, she tried mailing in her Greenville County application more than a month ago. She says she was sent a questionnaire instead of her registration card. The list of questions is sent to inquiring college students is part of a long standing Greenville County election commission policy to determine if the student is a serious resident of the area. Now, it is at the center of a lawsuit filed against the state and the county election commissions.
South Carolina: Voter registration deadline not extended, still mail-in registrations discrepancies exist | WJBF
We are just a little over a month from Election Day and time is winding down to register to vote. Many voters may not be aware that when you send in that voter registration card could be the deciding factor, when it comes to whether a vote is counted. Federal law requires all mailed-in voter registration forms to be in 30 days before Election Day and that falls on a Sunday this year. That following Monday is Columbus Day, so many states have extended the voter registration deadline, but that’s not the case in South Carolina. South Carolina has made it simple for people to register to vote. More than 100,000 Aiken County residents have signed-up in person, online, or by mail.