Missouri University of Science and Technology

Election security is about more than just machines, researcher says

Newswise — ROLLA, Mo. – As the 2020 elections approach, voters need to be aware of possibly malicious attempts to manipulate their opinions and their votes, according to Dr. George Markowsky, professor of computer science at Missouri University of Science and Technology.

Markowsky says the scope of election security extends beyond hacking of voting machines to the entire process, starting with online political campaigns. Markowsky is creating a Cyber Society Laboratory to study the interface between computers and society and recently gave a series of presentations on the Missouri S&T campus focusing on election security.

“Elections are a way to directly communicate with government. We need to look at the process as a whole system,” says Markowsky. “Ultimately, this issue affects everybody.”

Markowsky says someone might have a goal of hacking electronic voting machines on election day, or they could aim to influence elections much earlier through disinformation campaigns. He says the point of such a campaign is to sow suspicion and make voters unsure of the truth. Often, the perpetrators do not care which side wins, they just want to disrupt the process, Markowsky says.

 “We cannot lose the ability to have rational discussions with those with whom we disagree,” says Markowsky. “We need to, as Americans, realize there are entities deliberately trying to make us see other Americans as enemies.”

Markowsky points out that social media and online news feeds play a large role in affecting voter viewpoints. When voters click on a post, the online outlet tracks page views and begins promoting stories that have similar perspectives to those the voters have already read. Pretty soon, Markowsky says, news “bubbles” are created and voters are presented with only one side of an issue.

“The public needs to demand substantive debates, not name calling,” Markowsky says. “And we need to realize that computers are tools, not masters.”

###

Here are links to Markowsky’s presentations on the topic of election security:

Election Security 2020, Part 1 – Introduction https://rol.la/2CNdKbg

Election Security 2020, Part 2 – Physical Security https://rol.la/2CJ0uV0

Election Security 2020, Part 3 – The System Perspective https://rol.la/33QGagr

Filters close

Showing results

110 of 5973
Newswise: Colonial Pipeline Hack Is Latest Example of Cybersecurity Threats to Physical Infrastructure
Released: 13-May-2021 3:05 PM EDT
Colonial Pipeline Hack Is Latest Example of Cybersecurity Threats to Physical Infrastructure
Arizona State University (ASU)

Ransomware and security: ASU Expert answers questions about securing the private side of the nation's infrastructure.

Released: 13-May-2021 9:00 AM EDT
Addressing Systemic Racism in Academia: Live Expert Panel for May 19, 5:30pm ET
Newswise

Experts from the American Thoracic Society will discuss issues with systemic racism in academia as a follow-up to their session on this topic at the virtual 2021 ATS Annual Conference.

Released: 6-May-2021 11:05 AM EDT
Virtual Event Examines Impact and Evolution of the Role of America’s First Ladies
American University

Prominent scholars, archivists, historians, former White House staff members and insiders gather to explore the fascinating lives and evolving roles of America’s First Ladies Symposium. The event is hosted by the White House Historical Association in partnership with American University's First Ladies Initiative.

Newswise:Video Embedded covid-19-vaccine-understanding-herd-immunity-vaccine-hesitancy
VIDEO
Released: 5-May-2021 11:05 AM EDT
COVID-19 vaccine: Understanding herd immunity, vaccine hesitancy
University of Michigan

Since the beginning of the pandemic, herd immunity has been portrayed as the holy grail to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic.


Showing results

110 of 5973

close
39.6356