Written byPatrick Howell O'Neill
Sen. Ron Wyden continued his cybersecurity push on Tuesday, demanding information about security practices and independent audits from six of the largest voting machine vendors in the U.S. and two federal test laboratories.
“As our election systems have come under unprecedented scrutiny, public faith in our electoral process at every level is more important than ever before,” the Oregon Democrat wrote to the companies and the labs, a day after urging the U.S. Supreme Court to improve its email encryption.
“Ensuring that Americans can trust that election systems and infrastructure are secure is necessary to protecting confidence in our electoral process and democratic government,” he wrote.
Wyden contacted Dominion Voting, Election Systems & Software, Five Cedars Group, Hart InterCivic, MicroVote and Unisyn Voting Solutions.
The Department of Homeland Security assessed that Russian hackers targeted state election systems but several states dispute that claim. The hacking did not involve vote tallying, the DHS emphasized.
At this year’s Def Con hacking conference in Las Vegas, security experts broke into U.S. voting machines in less than a day in a public display to show both the vulnerabilities of the machines and how to protect them.
In the letter, which you can read in full below, Wyden asked the firms’ chief executives about the number of employment executives, managers and employees working exclusively on information security. The senator also sought information about independent security audits, what action if any was taken after such an audit, how the company deals with vulnerability reports, data breach reports and adherence to NIST’s best practices.
“I write to seek public answers about cybersecurity threats to our election infrastructure,” Wyden wrote.