One of the most detrimental misconceptions about the US election interference by the Kremlin is that it began and ended with the presidential elections of 2016. Regardless of your party or political affiliation, it should be clear to everyone that the conclusion made by the US intelligence community that the 2016 presidential elections were interfered with by Russia is 100% factual. Moreover, we should now be even more vigilant than ever now that the Directors of the top intelligence agencies gave a stern warning on Tuesday that Moscow would try to interfere again with the forthcoming mid-0term elections in November.
The systems that run elections differ from precinct to precinct and from one state to the other. However, most of these systems are still vulnerable to foreign interference that not only the Russians can exploit, but other adversaries of the United States. It is therefore incumbent of the United States government under the leadership of President Donald Trump to put up cybersecurity systems to counter any potential threat and give an assurance to the American electorate that their votes are counted and that their voices matter. The Department of Homeland Security has in the past said that Electoral infrastructure was one of the main elements that affected national security just like the national power grid and promised to do all that was within their powers to protect it from being compromised by hackers and other cybercriminals.
The US government through its numerous agencies can take various steps to improve the election’s system security across the numerous critical infrastructure elements and segments of the database that is critical to the American democratic institutions. The Trump administration and the US Congress should act fast as time is running out before the November mid-term elections to protect the electoral systems from foreign interference. For instance, the Trump administration should have a declaration issues stating that the US government views attempt to meddle or influence the upcoming elections through clandestine or covert means as an attack on the fundamentals on which Washington runs on.
The US government should also state that such activities would not be tolerated and it has the right to take stern action of the perpetrators of such cybercrimes and that they will be brought to justice under the US and international law. President Trump needs to stamp his authority both locally and internationally that the Free world, under US leadership would not tolerate activities that undermine American democracy.