Press Releases

09/09/2019

Secretary Merrill, Senator Blumenthal Hold Election Cybersecurity Discussion

HARTFORD – Secretary of the State Denise Merrill and Senator Richard Blumenthal held a discussion on election cybersecurity today. They were joined by Dr. Alex Russell, the Director of the UConn VoTeR Center, to discuss Connecticut’s election cyberdefenses and how they are being strengthened, federal responses to foreign election interference and the need for more federal resources to protect elections and purchase new voting machines in the future, among other issues. Video from the discussion is available here: http://www.ctn.state.ct.us/ctnplayer.asp?odID=16669

“When agents of the Russian government scanned Connecticut’s servers in 2016, our cyberdefenses successfully turned them back,” said Merrill. “Since then, we have only made our defenses stronger. Connecticut voters should know that our elections will be free from interference in 2019, 2020, and beyond.”

“The 2016 Election attack was only a dress rehearsal for 2020. Russia and other nations will continue to attack our elections and democracy,” said Blumenthal. “Congress must strengthen federal laws against foreign election interference and provide state and local governments with resources to strengthen their cyber defenses. Connecticut is a national leader in this critical effort. Voters can head to the polls on Tuesday knowing that Connecticut has taken robust measures to defend our elections against cyber-attacks and meddling.”

"The Voting Technology Research Center at the University of Connecticut is responsible for providing scientific advice to the Office of the Secretary of the State regarding the security of electronic voting technology,” said Russell. “The Center maintains an active cybersecurity dialog with the Secretary of the State, designs and implements direct forensic auditing of the memory cards used to program the State's voting tabulators, and supplies software and expertise to carry out the State's audits of ballots cast during election day. The Center anticipates working with the Secretary to assess new voting technologies, assist with selection of replacement voting tabulators, and develop safe use practices for e-pollbook solutions."


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