Letter on Election Security
Fellow North Carolinians,
In early 2017, the Department of Homeland Security designated U.S. elections systems, such as voter registration databases and voting machines, as “critical infrastructure.” That means our elections systems—like our transportation, energy and water systems—are vital to national security.
This year, Congress and the General Assembly provided nearly $11 million to make election security-related improvements in North Carolina.
We are using that money to help secure our elections from threats, both internal and external, so voters and candidates can have confidence in election results.
Here are a few of the many ways the State Board of
Elections & Ethics Enforcement is protecting election
- By the 2020 elections, all 100 North Carolina counties will use paper ballots or machines that produce paper ballots. Most counties already use paper ballots. In counties using touch-screen machines, a paper log is kept for review by the voter. The machines are not connected to the Internet.
- Our agency works closely with the Department of Homeland Security, which regularly monitors the state’s election systems to detect unauthorized access and weaknesses.
- We are expanding the state’s post-election audit program and hiring new data staff. Audits identify data irregularities, supporting uniformity and compliance across 100 counties.
- We are hiring a chief information security officer to oversee the State Board’s cybersecurity efforts.
- We have formed a Cyber Advisory Panel of recognized security experts to help harden our systems.
- We are training state and county boards of elections employees on detection, prevention and response to cyberattacks.
- We are requiring background checks on anyone with access to elections systems.
We are committed to securing your vote in an ever-changing elections landscape.
At the State Board, our goal has always been making sure elections are accessible, fair and accurate. That mission will not be undercut by domestic or foreign threats. You have the right to be confident that your vote counts, and we promise to remain vigilant on your behalf.
Kim Westbrook Strach