Editorials: Digital ballots, outdated machinery leave us exposed to a second Russian hack | Jason Smith/USA Today

July 21, 2017

The Russians aren’t coming. They came. And they launched a cyber strike on last fall’s elections for which the consequences remain an unknown. It’s a sexy, new Cold War replete with headlines featuring the president’s son and a curious meeting with Russians last summer. Sadly, what gets lost within these seductive media narratives are the comprehensive hazards of America’s voting components. It’s essential to note that there’s no confirmed proof any vote recording or ballot tallies were altered back in November. However, such knowledge provides little solace because American voting systems remain extremely vulnerable, and as former FBI Director James Comey said of the Russians, “They will be back.” If the U.S. does not change how it conducts elections, when the Russians return, many of the vulnerabilities from 2016 will still be intact. I learned of these insecurities while producing “I Voted?,” a non-partisan documentary on election integrity.

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