By CHRISTINA A. CASSIDY and KATE BRUMBACK, Associated Press
A bunch of election safety specialists on Thursday known as for a rigorous audit of the upcoming California gubernatorial recall after copies of techniques used to run elections throughout the nation have been launched publicly.
Their letter despatched to the secretary of state’s workplace urges the state to conduct a sort of post-election audit that may assist detect malicious makes an attempt to intrude.
The statewide recall focusing on Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom, set for Sept. 14, is the primary election since copies of Dominion Voting Systems’ election administration system have been distributed final month at an occasion organized by MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, an ally of former President Donald Trump who has made unsubstantiated claims about final yr’s election. Election workplaces throughout 30 states use the Dominion system, together with 40 counties in California.
Election safety specialists have mentioned the breaches, from a county in Colorado and one other in Michigan, pose a heightened threat to elections as a result of the system is used for various administrative features — from designing ballots and configuring voting machines to tallying outcomes. In the letter, the specialists mentioned they don’t have proof that anybody plans to try a hack of the techniques utilized in California and usually are not casting blame on Dominion.
“However, it’s important to acknowledge that the discharge of the Dominion software program into the wild has elevated the danger to the safety of California elections to the purpose that emergency motion is warranted,” the specialists wrote of their letter, which was shared with The Associated Press.
The eight specialists signing the letter embody laptop scientists, election expertise specialists and cybersecurity researchers.
Jenna Dresner, a spokeswoman for Secretary of State Shirley Weber, mentioned the 40 counties in California utilizing Dominion make use of a distinct model of the election administration system that meets varied state-specific necessities. She outlined quite a few safety measures in place to defend voting techniques throughout the state. That consists of common testing for vulnerabilities, strict controls on who has entry, bodily safety guidelines and pre-election testing to make sure that no a part of the system has been modified.
“California has the strictest and most complete voting system testing, use, and necessities within the nation, and it was designed to face up to potential threats,” Dresner mentioned in a press release to the AP.
The safety specialists need California counties utilizing Dominion’s election administration system to do what’s generally known as a “risk-limiting audit,” which primarily makes use of a statistical method to make sure that the reported outcomes match the precise votes solid. California additionally makes use of paper ballots, which makes it simpler to confirm outcomes.
The letter mentioned variations between the leaked Dominion software program pictures and the variations utilized in California are comparatively minor. The specialists mentioned 1000’s of individuals now have entry to the underpinnings of Dominion’s election administration system, together with some who could have entry to voting gear.
“That will increase the danger of undetected outcome-changing cyber-attacks on California counties that use Dominion gear and the danger of accusations of fraud and election manipulation which, with out rigorous post-election auditing, could be unattainable to disprove,” the letter states.
Cassidy and Brumback reported from Atlanta.
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