We now know that Russia targeted all 50 states in 2016. Of course they did. Does anyone really think that the enormous effort Russia has put behind this cyber-war for at least three years isn’t working for them?
It’s time to ask the real questions
> Why this information is being kept from us?
> Also why was the VR Systems hack classified?
> Doesn’t it seem like there is an effort to give us the false impression that the Election System is secure and working?
> Do you really think that, even now, we have any idea of the scope of what happened? Or, how long this has been happening?
The Big Secret: Russia Targeted All 50 States
Hell, it took a full year after the 2016 Election before DHS notified the States that they were even targeted. How is that possible? DHS eventually notified 37 states that they were targeted. But we now know that all 50 states were targeted. Why didn’t DHS inform all of the states? And why didn’t they inform any of the states sooner? Was the secret more important?
By the way, we should acknowledge that Trump must have had this information from the beginning. Yet, Trump and the GOP have blocked every security measure possible to secure our elections.
Going back to the VR Systems hack, which caused a real problem in Durham County, NC. People showed up to vote in Durham, a large, Democratic county, only to be informed that they already had voted.
The real “security” in our Election System is that it was built with so many layers and players that it is virtually impossible to find out or trace a problem; thereby, protecting itself.
So, Russia targeted all 50 states. What now?
We are spending an awful lot of time discussing how to put safeguards on a bad system and very little time understanding that it would be much easier and efficient to put a better system in place. Not just the front end. There must be rules and policies that are enforced.
Significant Risk limiting Audit Policies. Enforceable Recount Policies. To name a couple.
Let’s not forget the big one. If you are an elected official and you manipulate the election system, you should be prosecuted. There must be significant penalties.
How many times did Walker get his hand slapped by a judge? Did it stop him from continuing to do the same thing? Kemp’ actions over so many years with no penalty allowed him to intercede and fix his own election for Governor. They know the benefits outweigh the consequences when there are no consequences.
Sometimes it is just cheaper and more beneficial to stop trying to repair that old clunker. Just get a new one. One that works. This is the Big One.
The Private Vendor Problem
While we are dreaming big, the real step to fixing things is to take private companies out of our elections. The States wanted the responsibility, they should take it. Public elections run and maintained by the State.
That way we will never have to hear again that a Russian Oligarch is now involved in our Voter Registrations, like we heard from Maryland. The states can’t vet each of the election vendors and their thousands of employees.
All It Takes
The right vendor. A couple of the right employees. One successful spear-phishing campaign. And, suddenly, a state has a huge problem. And it’s a problem they probably would never know about. Now times that by the fact that Russia targeted all 50 states.
These private vendors have been doing this for 20 years. Old equipment. New equipment. All we hear about are problems. Backdoors. Switched Votes. Name another industry where the buyer would continually open the door to a vendor that has this kind of resume.
We actually have states decertifying machines that have failed and other States actively purchasing and deploying those failed systems. It is pure lunacy.
The moral to our story: there is much more here than just counting votes. We need to get it back to just counting votes. Until that happens, we won’t consider this done.
Written by Mike Farb
Read More about Russian Hacking and US Elections: