Friday, August 07, 2020

Non-partisan workshops to discuss election cybersecurity

In an uncertain election season, "journalists are being warned not to expect to call winners on Election Night, Nov. 3, as they might do for a typical election. The pandemic has turned everything upside down," University of Kentucky associate journalism professor Buck Ryan writes for the Chatham News + Record in North Carolina. "Whether it be cybersecurity or misinformation and disinformation or crisis communications, your public election officials are facing battles on multiple fronts to ensure fair and accurate vote counts."

One major concern is cybersecurity. A bipartisan initiative from the University of Southern California Annenberg's Center on Communication Leadership and Policy is holding a workshop in each state to discuss the topic, including information on efforts at the state and local level. The initiative, funded by Google, has already visited most states, but more are scheduled. Click here to see when your state's workshop will be or has been.

Don Blevins Jr., the chief election official in Fayette County, Kentucky, said in his state's workshop that his main concern wasn't cybersecurity as much as the public's confidence in the elections: "My primary concern is that the public will lose confidence in elections through misinformation or other types of activities that might lead them to believe their vote doesn’t count or that the election is rigged... I think that is a far greater challenge we need to watch for."

No comments: