Strengthening election cybersecurity is essential for safeguarding democracy. Attacks against recent elections in the U.S. and Europe demonstrate that cybercriminals and nation-state attackers are becoming more aggressive, even as campaigning and voting become increasingly reliant on computers.
In this talk, I’ll explain how cyberattacks on voting infrastructure threaten the integrity of elections and stand to undermine confidence in democratic processes. Computer voting raises serious security risks, from denial-of-service attacks that could disrupt voting to malware that could alter election outcomes. Although researchers have developed practical safeguards, they have yet to be widely deployed due to a lack of resources and political will.
I will also discuss recent efforts to safeguard voting in the U.S., which suffered unprecedented politically motivated cyberattacks during the 2016 presidential election. This spring, Congress provided $380M in new funding to strengthen elections, but political obstacles and a lack of uniform standards mean U.S. elections are likely to remain at risk well into the future.