The ACSC June 4 Campaign Cyber Defense Workshop at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston will be here before we know it.  The workshop agenda is set and has been posted to the ACSC web site. The ACSC’s goal in producing this event is to help both campaign staffers and the general public better understand what resources are available to help secure the election process.

Following opening remarks from ACSC director Michael Figueroa, the morning program will focus on the different federal and state agencies with responsibility for fair elections. Although the U.S. Constitution does give the individual states responsibility for conducting elections, in fact, the federal government offers significant resources.  The federal focus of election security falls on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), cyber-intelligence functions within the National Security Agency (NSA), while the Department of Justice (FBI), and the Department of Defense (US Cyber Command) are critical to defending election integrity.

Our first three speakers will discuss the roles and responsibilities of these agencies.

First up, Cheryl Davis, managing director, FTI Consulting (former Director of Cybersecurity Policy, National Security Council) will discuss the “National Security Perspective.” Cheryl will explain which agencies are coordinating with the 2018 midterm election and what support campaigns can expect from them.

Next up, Ron Ford, Cybersecurity Advisor (New England), for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will discuss “The Federal Agency Perspective.” He’ll describe what resources are available from DHS, what indicators political campaign staff should look for that may signal a reportable event, and who they should contact.  Ron will also provide some insight into how DHS is preparing for the 2018 midterm elections as well as their advice campaign staffers.

The third leg of the federal overview will be provided by Hans Olson, Assistant Undersecretary of Homeland Security, Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Hans will discuss resources available from the state, how campaigns can most effectively open communication paths with the state and local officials, and who they should contact about cybersecurity issues.

Cheryl, Ron and Hans will then take part in a panel discussion moderated by ACSC director Michael Figueroa. The wrap up will include:  

  • What campaign staff can expect from federal agencies and delve into;
  • The lines between federal, state, and local government;
  • Individual campaign responsibilities;
  • How to respond to potential attacks;
  • Information and intelligence sharing.

They’ll also take question from the attendees. In our next blog, we’ll provide a synopsis of the second half or the ACSC Campaign Cyber Defense Workshop program.

Registration for the ACSC Campaign Cyber Defense Workshop is open at Eventbrite