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Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold on 2020 election security

The state’s top elections official spoke on a panel co-sponsored by MSU Denver’s Golda Meir Center for Political Leadership.

September 24, 2020

By Cory Phare

Colorado is a leader in mail-in-ballot voting. And Secretary of State Jena Griswold intends to keep it that way in the 2020 election.

Hackers are trying to “jiggle the lock” on the state’s election infrastructure, experts said Tuesday during a panel discussion sponsored by the Truman National Security Project and the Metropolitan State University of Denver-based Golda Meir Center for Political Leadership.

In response, the state is ramping up information-technology professionals and hard-copy ballots as measures to ensure election integrity, Griswold said.

“We’re in a good spot,” she said, referring to the state’s election security.

The panel, which focused on inclusion, representation and security in Colorado's elections, was moderated by Adams County Commissioner Emma Pinter and also included Rob Preuhs, Ph.D., MSU Denver Department of Political Science chair and professor, and Denise Maes, ACLU Colorado public-policy director.

In addition to security measures to combat threats, the panel also discussed voter suppression efforts and the need to combat deliberate misinformation campaigns.

RELATED: Lessons from the election that delivered Colorado's most diverse General Assembly ever

Such misinformation can be countered with facts and information literacy, but it's important to also recognize confirmation bias, Pruehs said.

“It’s tricky… we’re all susceptible to (misinformation), so we need to step back and be aware that we’re human beings,” he said. “These kinds of tactics are not unique; we just have the technology that makes it easy to do – and everywhere.”

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