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Hacking Elections: Cyber Threats, Vulnerabilities, and The Way Forward

Level: Advanced
Runtime: 94 minutes
Recorded Date: March 18, 2019
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  • Cybersecurity Overview
  • Foreign Interference
  • Election Ecosystem
  • Cascading Effects
  • Changing Nature of Threats and Adversary Thinking
  • Election System Reforms
  • Conclusions
  • Q & A
Runtime: 1 hour and 34 minutes
Recorded: March 18, 2019


From information warfare to hacking, U.S. adversaries have interefered with U.S. elections. Who are the adversaries? What are the vulnerabilities theses adversaries seek to exploit and what disruption or damage could they cause? Have sufficient improvements been made and actions been taken in the U.S. to minimize these threats? What are the barriers to a more effective response?

This program will explore the threats and actions of U.S. adversaries against U.S. elections, current U.S. readiness, and what additional steps should be taken to address an issue in which we all have a stake.

This program was recorded on March 18th, 2019.

Provided By

American Bar Association
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David S. Turetsky

Professor of Practice,
The College of Emergency Preparedness Homeland Security and Cybersecurity at the University at Albanay, SUNY

David Turetsky brings more than 35 years of experience, including senior roles in business, government and law. Immediately before joining UAlbany, he was based in Washington D.C., where he co-led the cybersecurity, privacy and data protection practice at global law firm Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP. In addition, he served as a member of the American Bar Association's Cybersecurity Legal Task Force, co-leads the privacy and security working group of the Information Sharing and Analysis Organization Standards Organization created pursuant to an executive order issued by President Obama, and was co-chair of the Federal Communications Bar Association's Emergency Preparedness and Homeland Security Committee.

Turetsky served as a senior leader at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), for most of his tenure as chief of the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau, where he led cybersecurity policy for the FCC, including its public-private efforts and its engagement in Obama interagency cybersecurity work led by the White House and other agencies. He also led the FCC’s efforts regarding emergency communications and related emergency preparedness and homeland security issues, working closely with stakeholders and other government agencies, and oversaw the FCC’s continuity of operations program. He served briefly as deputy chief of the FCC’s International Bureau.

In business, Turetsky served as a senior officer of a telecommunications services start-up that he helped to grow and bring public; and twice served as Management Trustee, while in private law practice, appointed by federal courts on the recommendation of the Bush Department of Justice (DoJ), to manage all aspects of mobile wireless service businesses in a total of 20 mostly rural markets under merger consent decrees until those businesses were divested. He led or co-led the antitrust practice of another global law firm for seven years and has more than 20 years of experience in major law firms, mostly as a partner, in Washington D.C., and in New York City. In the Clinton Administration, Turetsky served as a deputy assistant attorney general for antitrust in the DoJ, with special responsibility for competition enforcement and policy issues affecting regulated industries, in the U.S. and abroad. This included a senior leadership role for the DoJ in working with the White House and Congress in the development, passage and implementation of the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

Turetsky has a J.D. from the University of Chicago School of Law, studied at the London School of Economics and Political Science and has a B.A. magna cum laude from Amherst College.

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Lucy L. Thomson, CISSP

Founding Partner
Livingston, PLLC

Lucy Thomson, CISSP, is Founding Principal at Livingston PLLC, a Washington, D.C. law firm that focuses on legal and technology issues related to cybersecurity, global data privacy, compliance and risk management.

She is Past Chair of the American Bar Association (ABA) Section of Science & Technology Law and editor of the ABA best-selling Data Breach and Encryption Handbook. A career white collar crime prosecutor at the U.S. Department of Justice and a former senior engineer at a global technology company, she worked as a government Information System Security Officer (ISSO) and Privacy Advocate. Appointed Consumer Privacy Ombudsman in 25 of the largest federal bankruptcy cases, she has overseen the disposition of 250 million electronic consumer records.

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Suzanne Spaulding

Senior Adviser, Homeland Security, International Security Program
Center for Strategic and International Studies

Suzanne Spaulding served as under secretary for the National Protection and Programs Directorate at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), where she was effectively the CEO, with a rank equivalent to a four-star general, managing a $3 billion budget and a workforce of 18,000, charged with strengthening cybersecurity and protecting the nation’s critical infrastructure. She led the transformation of budget, acquisition, analytic, and operational processes to bring greater agility and unity of effort to an organization that had experienced dramatic growth through acquisition of new entities and missions over several years. Throughout her career, Ms. Spaulding has advised CEOs, boards, and government policymakers on how to manage complex security risks, across all industry sectors. At DHS, she led the development and implementation of national policies for infrastructure protection, including support for National Security Special Events at stadiums and other public venues and development of the National Infrastructure Protection Plan; worked with industry to establish CEO-level coordinating councils in the electric and financial services sectors; and chaired the federal government’s Aviation Cybersecurity Initiative to identify and address key cyber vulnerabilities in the national aviation system. She worked with many foreign governments on critical infrastructure and cybersecurity, including negotiating agreements with China and Israel, and led security regulation of the chemical industry; biometrics and identity management; emergency communications; and the Federal Protective Service. As a member of the Board of Directors for the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet), Ms. Spaulding helped oversee the complex and unprecedented effort to deploy the first nation-wide broadband network for public safety. She is currently on the Board of Directors for George Washington University’s Center for Cyber & Homeland Security; the Advisory Board of Harvard University’s Defending Digital Democracy project; and the faculty of the National Association of Corporate Directors. Following the attacks of 9/11, Ms. Spaulding worked with key critical infrastructure sectors as they reviewed their security posture and advised the CEOs of the Business Roundtable. In 2002, she was appointed by Governor Mark Warner of Virginia to the Secure Commonwealth Panel to advise the governor and the legislature regarding preparedness issues. She was managing partner of the Harbour Group; a principal in the Bingham Consulting Group; and of counsel to Bingham McCutchen, LLP.

Ms. Spaulding has served in Republican and Democratic administrations and on both sides of the aisle in Congress. She was general counsel for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and minority staff director for the U.S. House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. She also spent six years at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), where she was legal adviser to the director’s Nonproliferation Center. She was a member of the CSIS Commission on Cybersecurity for the 44th Presidency, which developed a bipartisan national cybersecurity strategy in advance of the 2008 election; executive director of the National Commission on Terrorism and the Commission to Assess the Organization of the Federal Government to Combat the Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction; and a consultant on the Advisory Panel to Assess Domestic Response Capabilities for Terrorism Involving Weapons of Mass Destruction and the Commission on the Intelligence Capabilities of the United States Regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction. She is a member of the Aspen Institute’s Homeland Security Group; former chair of the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Law and National Security; founder of the Cybersecurity Legal Task Force; and was a member of Harvard University’s Long-Term Legal Strategy Project for Preserving Security and Democratic Freedoms in the War on Terror. Ms. Spaulding has convened and participated in numerous academic and professional advisory panels, been a frequent commentator in public media, and often testified before Congress.

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William A. Carter

Deputy Director and Fellow, Technology Policy Program
Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)

William A. Carter is deputy director of the Technology Policy Program at CSIS. His research focuses on international cyber and technology policy issues, including artificial intelligence, surveillance and privacy, data localization, cyber conflict and deterrence, financial sector cybersecurity, and law enforcement and technology, including encryption. He has spoken at events and conferences around the world and participated in Track 2 dialogues on cyber and technology policy issues with China, Russia, and Australia.

Before joining CSIS, he worked in the Goldman Sachs Investment Strategy Group, where he performed research and analysis on geopolitics and the macro economy and produced reports and presentations on international affairs and current events and their impact on markets. He previously worked at the Council on Foreign Relations and at Caxton Associates, a New York hedge fund.

He graduated from New York University with a B.A. in economics.

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Ruth Hill Bro

Privacy and Cybersecurity Attorney

Ruth Hill Bro (Chicago) has focused her legal career on advising companies on privacy and information management strategy, global compliance, the electronic workplace, and e-business. She has been featured as a speaker on these issues over 160 times (including serving on the Planning Committee in 2016 and 2017 for the ABA’s first Internet of Things (IoT) National Institutes) and has over 90 published works on these topics. These works include The ABA Cybersecurity Handbook (contributing author, 2013, ABA), Data Breach and Encryption Handbook (two chapters, 2011, ABA), The E-Business Legal Arsenal: Practitioner Agreements and Checklists (Editor, 2004, ABA); Internet in the Workplace: Managing Organizational Access (designed and taught one-day course throughout the U.S. and co-authored book, 1997, Software Publishers Association); Online Law (five chapters, 1996, Addison-Wesley); and her column CPO Corner: Interviews with Leading Chief Privacy Officers (2005-present, published in The SciTech Lawyer magazine).

Ruth is a longstanding leader in the American Bar Association (ABA), where she serves as a member of the ABA Standing Committee on Disaster Response and Preparedness, the ABA Board of Governors Communications Task Force, the ABA E-Mail Stakeholder Committee, and the ABA Cybersecurity Legal Task Force (Co-Vice Chair). Ruth served two three-year terms on the ABA Standing Committee on Technology and Information Systems (the second term as Chair), three years as a liaison to the ABA Standing Committee on Continuing Legal Education, three years as a member of the ABA Cybersecurity Legal Task Force, and two years on the ABA Commission on the Future of Legal Services, a two-year presidential commission established to improve access to, and delivery of, legal services in the U.S. Ruth also is a leader in the ABA Section of Science & Technology Law (SciTech), where she serves as a Special Advisor to the Chairs of the Privacy, Security, and Emerging Technology Division and served as 2008-2009 Section Chair, Membership and Diversity Committee Chair (2009-2016), and E-Privacy Law Committee Founder and Chair (2000-2005).

Ruth has served on many of the top advisory/editorial boards in the privacy, data security, and technology field (including The SciTech Lawyer, DataGuidance (U.S. Panel of Experts), Internet Law & Strategy, The Privacy & Data Protection Legal Reporter (Executive Editor/Chairman of the Board of Editors), and BNA’s Privacy & Security Law Report) in addition to the boards of two arts organizations and the Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education. She has been recognized as a leader by numerous organizations, including for four consecutive years in Ethisphere Institute’s annual list of Attorneys Who Matter (data privacy/security).

Her views have been noted by the Wall Street Journal, International Herald Tribune, New York Times, Economist Intelligence Unit, ABA Journal, National Law Journal, Corporate Counsel, BNA Privacy & Security Law Report, Legaltech News, Bloomberg Radio, and CNBC. Ruth started her legal career at McBride Baker & Coles (now Holland & Knight) and then spent nearly a decade at Baker & McKenzie, where she was a partner in the Chicago office and founding North American member of the firm’s Global Privacy Steering Committee.

Before getting her J.D. from the University of Chicago, Ruth had a successful career in major gifts fundraising at Northwestern University, where she earned her B.A. in English and Political Science.

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