Report: Louisiana earns ‘D’ for election security

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 Less than nine months before midterm elections, a new study shows that most state election systems remain vulnerable to hacking and other interference by foreign governments bent on disrupting the election process.

The Center for American Progress conducted research and interviewed election officials to determine their election security preparedness after U.S. intelligence agencies concluded that Russia tried to influence the 2016 election by targeting state voting systems.

As events have shown, election security is now a matter of national security, especially because U.S. intelligence officials have predicted that hostile nation-states such as Russia again will attempt to penetrate U.S. election infrastructure in 2018 and 2020.

  • Louisiana received a D.
  • No state received an A and only 11 states received a B. Another 23 states received a C, 12 states received a D, and five states received failing grades. Even states receiving a B are vulnerable to attack.
  • The biggest threat to election security is the continued use of paperless electronic voting machines, which are vulnerable to hacking and do not leave a reliable paper trail that can be audited to confirm election outcomes. Fourteen states use paperless DRE machines in at least some jurisdictions; five states rely exclusively on paperless DRE machines for voting.
  • Only two states (Colorado and Rhode Island) have good post-election auditing requirements in place. The report found that 33 states have post-election audit procedures that are unsatisfactory from an election security standpoint.
  • At least 10 states do not provide cybersecurity training to election officials

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