Experts Highlight Grave Risks to 2024 Elections Following Breaches in Voting Equipment Software

by Sophia Chen
Election Security Breaches

A group of specialists, alarmed by attempts to access voting system software in various states and distribute it to supporters of ex-President Donald Trump amid efforts to dispute the 2020 election outcome, have voiced significant concerns for the upcoming 2024 presidential election. These experts have called for comprehensive federal investigations.

Nearly two dozen computer scientists, election security professionals, and voting rights advocates have collectively requested a federal inquiry and a detailed risk evaluation of the nation’s voting machines. Their concern stems from software breaches that potentially jeopardize the 2024 elections and beyond. The affected systems, produced by two leading companies, are responsible for tallying more than 70% of votes nationwide.

The group’s letter, addressed to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, special counsel Jack Smith, FBI Director Christopher Wray, and Jen Easterly, the director of the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, emphasizes the gravity of the unauthorized acquisition of voting system software. This act not only poses a threat to election integrity and national security but also suggests a vast criminal conspiracy with far-reaching implications. The letter underscores the need to safeguard the fundamental principle of democracy: the integrity of the voting process.

Organized by the progressive advocacy organization Free Speech for People, the letter highlights the urgency of the situation. The FBI has not commented on the letter, and other agencies have yet to respond.

The aftermath of Trump’s 2020 election defeat has seen the proliferation of baseless conspiracy theories about voting machines, leading to threats against election officials, a movement for manual vote counting in some conservative areas, and defamation lawsuits against the equipment manufacturers. In states like Colorado, Georgia, and Michigan, individuals have been charged in connection with local election office breaches, but no federal investigation has been publicly disclosed.

The letter details the known attempts to access voting systems since the 2020 election, including a meeting on December 18, 2020, where Trump’s allies discussed gaining access to machines in key swing states. It also references charges filed in Fulton County, Georgia, against 19 individuals, including Trump, for allegedly conspiring to overturn the election results. Sidney Powell, one of the charged, has admitted guilt to lesser charges and agreed to testify against co-defendants.

The letter also links Powell to similar charges in Michigan and mentions breaches or attempts in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Nevada, and Colorado. The experts warn that access to voting software could enable malicious actors to interfere in the 2024 elections by exploiting vulnerabilities or fabricating evidence of vote tampering.

In Colorado, former Mesa County clerk Tina Peters has denied charges related to a 2021 breach, while federal involvement in the case remains unclear. In Michigan, a special prosecutor has indicated that local clerks were misled by some defendants, who remain uncharged.

Signatories of the letter, including computer scientist Douglas W. Jones, warn that the breaches’ impact extends beyond local offices, given the widespread use of the compromised software. Election technology expert Kevin Skoglund emphasizes the need for a federal investigation to mitigate risks and prevent future breaches.

This report includes contributions from Lindsay Whitehurst in Washington, D.C., of Big Big News.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Election Security Breaches

What are the concerns raised by experts about the 2024 elections?

Experts are alarmed by attempts to access and distribute voting system software, linked to supporters of former President Trump, which poses significant risks to the integrity and security of the 2024 presidential elections.

Who has been asked to investigate the breaches in voting equipment software?

The group of computer scientists, election security experts, and voter advocacy organizations have requested a federal investigation and risk assessment of the voting machines. They have addressed their concerns to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, special counsel Jack Smith, FBI Director Christopher Wray, and Jen Easterly, director of the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.

What implications do the breaches of voting software have?

The unauthorized access to voting system software threatens the integrity of the electoral process, national security, and suggests a potential criminal conspiracy. It could enable malicious actors to interfere in future elections and fabricate evidence of vote tampering.

Have there been any charges related to these breaches?

Yes, in states like Colorado, Georgia, and Michigan, individuals have been charged in connection with local election office breaches. Additionally, 19 individuals, including Trump, were charged in Fulton County, Georgia, for allegedly conspiring to overturn his election loss.

What is the extent of federal involvement in these cases?

While the FBI has not commented on the matter, the extent of federal involvement in specific cases, such as the one involving former Mesa County clerk Tina Peters in Colorado, remains unclear. There has been no public indication of a comprehensive federal probe into these breaches.

More about Election Security Breaches

  • Election Security Concerns for 2024
  • Federal Investigation Requests
  • Charges in Local Election Office Breaches
  • Fulton County Charges Against Trump Allies
  • Tina Peters’ Case in Colorado
  • 2020 Election Conspiracy Theories
  • Voting Machine Manufacturers’ Lawsuits
  • Unauthorized Access to Voting Systems
  • Impact of Voting Software Breaches on Democracy

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Sarah Lee December 5, 2023 - 10:46 pm

It’s interesting to see how the 2020 election is still impacting things today, The fallout from that election just keeps unfolding, and now it’s affecting the 2024 elections?

Tom Harolds December 6, 2023 - 1:07 am

Why isn’t there more media coverage on this?? It’s a major issue that affects the core of our democracy, People need to be more aware of what’s happening!

Mark Johnson December 6, 2023 - 1:31 am

I’m not surprised by these breaches, honestly, The security of our voting systems has been a concern for years and it seems like not enough is being done to protect them.

Jenny Smith December 6, 2023 - 9:34 pm

wow, this is really alarming stuff? its scary to think how easily our election systems can be compromised, especially with all the technology we have these days…


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