In response to heightened tensions related to Iran, Secretary of State Frank LaRose issued a special notice to Ohio’s 88 county boards of elections with instructions for managing potential threats.
Earlier this week, state networks across the U.S. experienced an increase in suspicious cyber activity from active internet protocol (IP) addresses originating from several countries, including Iran. In response, Secretary LaRose required county boards of elections to block an identified set of Iranian IP addresses on county firewalls. Due to proactive efforts by Secretary LaRose, there have been no successful intrusions into Ohio’s elections network, including county boards of elections.
“The bad guys only have to be right once. We have to be right every day,” said LaRose. “Enemies foreign and domestic have made it known that they are going on the offensive, and I want to assure Ohioans that I will be as transparent as I can be to share all available unclassified information with them about what we are doing to protect Ohio’s elections.”
County Boards of Elections are currently completing the final steps of the 34-point security directive issued by Secretary LaRose in June 2019. Additionally, LaRose is working with the Ohio National Guard to stand up the first-of-its-kind civilian Cyber-Reserve force that will provide the additional support necessary should an attack occur.