2016 demonstrated the urgent need for technological, legal and policy research into the feasibility of foreign powers hacking our election process and, more broadly, our governmental operations.
Although President Obama assured the country that 2016 votes were not changed through hacking, and recount efforts in several states found no evidence of actual vote changing, it is clear that risks of electronic voting machines hacking are real. Particularly in that Russia attempted to influence our election through theft and dissemination of private emails.
These issues require a serious, independent look well before the 2020 elections.
UCI has strong expertise to support such research and policy development, including cyber-physical systems, election law and, specifically, an expert in electronic voting machine law who also is a Board Member of the California Voter Foundation. In addition, business and government participants in UCI’s Cybersecurity Policy & Research Institute (CPRI) have experience and expertise with electronic voting machine hacking.
With appropriate funding, CPRI proposes to coordinate technical research into the feasibility of hacking electronic voting machines and, in a new contribution to prior research, identify vulnerabilities in the entire “supply chain” of the electronic voting process, including:
- The sourcing of parts and manufacturing of voting machines, including software and storage media;
- The physical security of machines at manufacture, in transit, and at polling places;
- The machines’ programming; and
- The handling of data once voting is complete.
CPRI will recommend minimum security standards for electronic voting machines and other model standards and laws to protect the integrity of, and the public confidence in, our elections.
Download Research Initiative Overview on “Protecting Our Democratic Elections and Governmental Functions”