American cybersecurity firm that specializes in building traceless, encrypted communications systems to insulate teams, equipment and datasets from targeted cyberattacks and observation, Dispel has launched a new solution called Election Cyber Defense System (ECDS) aimed to protect critical election IT infrastructure from foreign and domestic cyberattack ahead of 2018 midterm election in USA.
Company claimed that this product has been designed to protect critical election IT infrastructure from foreign and domestic cyberattack. “We have released this product in advance of the 2018 midterm elections in response to law-enforcement and intelligence reports of foreign adversaries targeting U.S. elections,” said Dispel.
Dispel ECDS protects three areas of the electoral process—voter rolls, vote counts, and election campaign communications—against tampering and theft by sophisticated adversaries through cryptographic, Moving Target Defense, and physical countermeasures, said technology firm.
“Democracies depend upon the factual integrity of, and societal confidence in, elections. While technically trivial to hack most voting machines in person, it is far simpler, logistically, to erode confidence in an election by attacking the points of the system that depend upon the Internet—networked computers at polling stations, election websites, State and local databases, and party committees,” stated Ian Schmertzler, President and co-founder of Dispel.
Dispel said that State and local election systems, and political campaigns, are often manned by volunteer staff with minimal formal technical expertise. With the 2018 midterms on the horizon—where 435 seats in the house, 33 seats in the Senate, and multiple local and state elections will be contested—a rapidly deployable IT defensive system is needed to prevent another compromised election.
“Election defense officials and political campaigns are looking for a more robust defense against nation-state adversaries than voting machine upgrades or white papers counseling people not to click on strange links,” added Ian Schmertzler. “They want economical solutions they can implement on their own that materially reduce the attack profiles of their systems.”
According to Dispel, its ECDS system rely on Moving Target Defense-based platform that can camouflages networks to effectively ‘disappear’ file transmissions and communications from the view of attackers.
The new platform consists of three main elements: It conceals transmissions and data repositories from view; enable physical and cryptographic hyper-segmentation of the network; and it create resilient data recovery trails via Write-Once, Read-Many Linear Tape Open (WORM LTO) cassette storage.
Dispel claimed that its ECDS automatically tunnels traffic into disassociated, encrypted, pathways to remove identifiable metadata, which frustrates attempts by attackers to locate, map, and attack election databases and networks. Featuring a turnkey, plug-in hardware device—called an ECDS Wicket—Dispel connects a user’s computer to a unique data room residing within its own uniquely keyed and cloaked Moving Target Defense network. While connected, the ECDS Wicket prevents a user’s computer from transmitting data to the external Internet, stopping any malware located on a user’s computer from stealing data. The system takes mere minutes for a user to install and learn.
“Dispel applied our extensive experience protecting the data and communications systems of public and private entities against hostile governments to our new election defense program,” says Ethan Schmertzler, CEO and co-founder of Dispel. “With ECDS, election officials and political campaigns have the tools they need to meet their mandates, while stopping cyberattacks in a cost-effective and simple manner.”