On Oct. 3, 2018, in Washington, federal election watchdogs conducted an election security briefing with state officials and members of Congress. William Evanina, director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, and Christopher Krebs, the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) cybersecurity chief, urged state officials to keep their lines of communication open to the federal administrators, as Election Day approaches and the possibility of an attack on their systems looms large.
Cybersecurity Chief Krebs identified a number of initiatives designed to improve and secure communications between federal and state officials. DHS has established an information-sharing center specifically for election security threats. The Department has also sent teams to help states identify vulnerabilities in their systems. Further, cyber-intrusion sensors have been deployed throughout the country, designed to provide warnings of cyber attacks.
Wednesday’s event is the latest in a series of briefings, some of which are classified, and regular conference calls with state leaders on election security threats. It followed last month’s two-day summit in St. Louis, which was led by DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielson.
New Jersey’s preparedness has been bolstered by a $9,757,450 federal grant, supplemented by a State Match of $487,873. These funds, distributed by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, were made available through the March 2018 Consolidated Appropriations Act, which included $380 million in grants to be allocated among the states. The funding will be used, into 2023, to improve the administration of elections for federal office, including enhancing election technology and improving election security.
Contact: Jon Moran, Senior Legislative Analyst, email@example.com, 609-695-3481 x121.