Leon County Officials Warn Residents of Electronic Vote Hacking

Electronic Voting
Posted at 5:12 PM, Oct 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-03 18:35:40-04

LEON COUNTY, FL (WTXL) - Leon County officials are warning residents about a major security issue that could effect elections in November. 

What officials are concerned about is called a denial of service attack. It doesn't change who you vote for, but how your ballot is counted. Every county in Florida is required to report their results to the Secretary of State's website within an hour of polls closing.

But a denial of service attack would shutdown the county's server, not letting any totals be reported and leaving people with a lot of questions.

However, there are ways to help combat these hackers. Leon County Supervisor of Elections said having a back up sever can thwart attacks if the main one takes a critical hit.

He also said that using paper ballots over digital can help because they can be physically recounted if the validity of any votes comes into question. 

"Just as you planned for emergency conditions on the road or emergency condition with personnel you need at this point to make emergency preparations for what happens if your Internet connection is attacked.Where is their back up server, do they have plans to shift their operations to another data center. This is not an uncommon activity but again what are those plans?" said Ion Sancho, Leon County supervisor of elections.