Campaign Email Security "as Bad as 2016"



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The founder of Tech Solidarity, a not-for-profit interested in helping the campaigns of progressive Democrats, has been talking to those campaigns about their email security. He's found things about where they were in 2016, when loose practices enabled the Russian government to romp freely through the emails of the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton presidential campaign.

The problems are familiar: using the same password on all accounts, using accounts known to have been compromised, and practices that continue to render organizations vulnerable to phishing. Campaigns are rushed, depend upon a wide variety of user-supplied devices, and, above all, have no one in charge of security.

Lots of help is on offer, but it's either piecemeal or concentrates on higher end problems like protecting financial data and opposition research. What's missing, Tech Solidarity founder Maciej Ceglowski writes, is what they most need: " specific and positive advice about locking down personal accounts, the digital security equivalent of 'wash your hands, boil your water.'"

He's describing in effect a culture of security. That culture can't be improvised in a week, but any organization can do things to build it, effectively and affordably. It's not a partisan or even a political issue, really. It's a matter of building employee awareness of the threat, and of making good use of interactive, new-school security awareness training to help them resist the social engineering they'll surely encounter. News stories of disasters alone won't motivate people to adopt better security practices, but interactive practice will. 

The Washington Post has the story: https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2018/09/04/im-teaching-email-security-democratic-campaigns-its-bad/


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