Georgia Democrats turn to KSU for answers on voter data hack

Former Attorney General Sam Olens is now president of Kennesaw State University. Hyosub Shin, hshin@ajc.com

The Democratic Party of Georgia appealed to Kennesaw State University for details about an alleged breach of confidential data that could affect millions of Georgia voter records, after the state’s top elections official rebuffed a similar request.

Party chair DuBose Porter demanded Thursday that KSU president Sam Olens reveal data about the extent of the attack, and urged him to accept help from the Department of Homeland Security to secure the elections infrastructure.

The FBI launched an inquiry into the suspected cyberattack this month at the request of state officials after they received notice that records kept by the Center for Election Systems at KSU may have been compromised. State officials have released few details amid the pending investigation, and KSU declined Friday to respond to Porter’s request.

 


 

A group of tech experts has also pushed for an overhaul of the state’s election system after the alleged breach, calling on Georgia to use a paper audit trail to ensure accuracy.

In a letter to Olens, Porter wrote that there’s “no confidence” in KSU’s handling of the voting records until more details of the breach are disclosed.

“It is your contractual obligation to provide Georgians with assurance that our voting system is sound and secure,” Porter wrote.

Porter issued similar demands to Secretary of State Brian Kemp, a Republican candidate for governor in 2018 whose spokeswoman accused Porter of trying to create a “manufactured crisis” to help Democrats in an upcoming April 18 special election.

“They would love nothing more than for us to flout Georgia law and use paper ballots so they can challenge the results when they lose,” said Kemp spokeswoman Candice Broce, “but we will not cater to such childish antics.”

Michael Smith, a spokesman for the Democratic Party, expressed shock that Kemp’s office predicted a Democratic loss for an election that has yet to take place.

“The election is five weeks away, and the chief elections officer in our state publicly stated that his party has already won an election before the first ballot has even been counted,” said Smith.

Read your copy of the letter here.

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