Introduction

At Narrative Strategies, our core competency is influence, both offensive and defensive in support of national security and projects/ programs for the greater good. Our 2020 elections are on the near horizon and from a national security perspective, still relatively unprotected from foreign influence. For this reason we have decided to do our part and add this page to our website as a free, no subscription required source for content and resources of value to both national security professionals and average voters.

We learned a painful lesson in 2016 regarding foreign and related unethical influence which impacted our American birthright of free and fair elections. Although some natsec progress has been made in regard to CYBER issues, the issue of American voters being influenced unethically and, in some cases, illegally during this election has not been addressed. 

Strengthening resolve to influence is called resilience.

We encourage government and organizational leaders at the local level and especially individual citizens to take advantage of these resources in order to strengthen their communities.Finally, please do not hesitate to contact us if we may be of any assistance to make your communities more resilient. 

How this page works

These resources currently include the following type websites and content but will be expanded as valuable additions become available. 

  • Fact-checking sites

  • Media bias checkers

  • Multi tool sites

  • Educational sites

  • Image verifying sites

  • The official FBI site, Protected Voices

  • The official DHS site of election resources

  • Articles from natsec experts at GTSC Homeland Security Today that put the threats into perspective

 Fact Checking sites:

Media bias checker:

Multi tool sites:

Educational sites:

Image verification checkers:

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Official FBI page: Protected Voices https://www.fbi.gov/investigate/counterintelligence/foreign-influence/protected-voices#Videos​

  • The FBI’s Protected Voices initiative provides tools and resources to political campaigns, companies, and individuals to protect against online foreign influence operations and cybersecurity threats.

  • Protected Voices resources include information and guidance from the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Director of National Intelligence (DNI).

The Threat

  • Foreign adversaries, including Russia and China, and foreign-aligned groups try to illegally influence American political processes. Three common foreign influence methods are:

  • Cyberattacks against political campaigns and government infrastructure. These attacks might include foreign adversaries hacking and leaking sensitive information from computers, databases, networks, phones, and emails.

  • Secret funding or influence operations to help or harm a person or cause. Tactics include political advertising from foreign groups pretending to be U.S. citizens, lobbying by unregistered foreign agents, and illegal campaign contributions from foreign adversaries.

  • Disinformation campaigns on social media platforms that confuse, trick, or upset the public For example, a foreign group may purposefully spread false or inconsistent information about an existing social issue to provoke all sides and encourage conflict.​

The Defense

  • Protect your voice. The FBI, in partnership with DHS and the DNI, have released a number of short videos on critical cybersecurity and foreign influence topics. The below videos include information on foreign influence tactics as well as tips and best practices on how to protect your digital devices, social media accounts, and private information from cyberattacks. New and updated videos for the fall of 2019 include:

  • We also encourage U.S. citizens working in critical infrastructure sectors to join InfraGard, an FBI-sponsored public-private partnership that offers the latest intelligence bulletins on cybersecurity and other threats.

We also encourage U.S. citizens working in critical infrastructure sectors to join InfraGard, an FBI-sponsored public-private partnership that offers the latest intelligence bulletins on cybersecurity and other threats.

Additional Resources 

 

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DHS Site: Election Security Resource Library   https://www.dhs.gov/publication/election-security-resource-library

Below is a collection of the publications and materials developed to support state and local officials in their efforts to safeguard election systems.  Beyond these resources, CISA offers voluntary and free assistance to state and local election officials and authorities to support their infrastructure’s security.

Checklists and Guides

DHS Campaign Checklist

A one-page cybersecurity checklist to support political campaigns in protecting against malicious actors.

Election Security Resources Guide

A compilation of CISA contacts and resources available to support state and local election officials.

HTTPS

An overview of Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS), which is used to encrypt and securely transmit information between a user's web browser and the website they are connected to. Encryption is especially important on webpages that collect information through forms or require a user to login, such as online voter registration.

Incident Handling Overview for Election Officials

A summary of CISA’s cyber incident response team services for election officials as well as one page guidance on incident response planning considerations, a checklist for requesting assistance, the incident response process and common mistakes to avoid.

Protected Voices

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Protected Voices initiative is designed to mitigate the risk of cyber influence operations targeting U.S. elections. As part of the initiative, FBI offices are coordinating with political campaigns at the local, state, and federal levels across the country to make them aware of potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities. The Protected Voices website includes resources, information and guidance from the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Director of National Intelligence (DNI).

Ransomware Executive One Pager and Technical Document

An interagency guide that provides an aggregate of Federal government and private industry best practices and mitigation strategies focused on the prevention and response to ransomware incidents. 

Securing Voter Registration Data

An overview of threats to voter registration websites and databases along with recommendations on how election officials and network administrators can protect and prevent the threats.

Leveraging the .gov

The .gov domain is a top-level domain (TLD) that was established to make it easy to identify US-based government organizations on the internet.  All three branches of the US Government, and all 50 states, and many local governments use .gov for their domains.

DMARC

Domain-Based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) is an email authentication policy that protects against bad actors using fake email addresses disguised to look like legitimate emails from trusted sources.  DMARC makes it easier for email senders and receivers to determine whether or not an email legitimately originated from the identified sender.  Further, DMARC provides the user with instructions for handling the email if it is fraudulent. 

Multi-Factor Authentication

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is a layered approach to securing data and applications where a system requires a user to present a combination of two or more credentials to verify a user's identify for login.  MFA increases security because even if one credential becomes compromised, unauthorized users will be unable to meet the second authentication requirement and will not be able to access the targeted physical space, computing device, network, or database.

Ransomware Guidance for Election Officials

This document includes best practices to protect your systems and data against ransomware, planning for a ransomware incident, recovering from a ransomware attack, and CISA services and support.

U.S. Electoral Process Infographic

An infographic that outlines pre-election, election day, and post-election activities that rely on election infrastructure.

Ensuring and Securing Your Vote - National Audience

An infographic outlining best practices for voters, co-logoed by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, the National Association of Secretaries of State, the National Association of State Election Directors, and the Department of Homeland Security.

Ensuring and Securing Your Vote - State & Local Audience

An infographic outlining best practices for voters that can be customized with a state or local website for additional information, co-logoed by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, the National Association of Secretaries of State and the National Association of State Election Directors.

Foreign Interference Taxonomy

An infographic that explains malign actions taken by foreign governments or foreign actors for the purpose of undermining the interests of the U.S. and its allies.

Flyers

Before You Vote - National

A joint flyer produced by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, the National Association of Secretaries of State, the National Association of State Election Directors, and the Department of Homeland Security to educate voters on actions they should take before Election Day.

Before You Vote - State and Local

A joint flyer produced by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, the National Association of Secretaries of State, and the National Association of State Election Directors that can be customized with a state or local election information website to educate voters on actions they should take before Election Day.

Vote with Confidence

A joint flyer produced by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, the National Association of Secretaries of State, the National Association of State Election Directors, and the Department of Homeland Security to help voters cast their ballots with confidence.

State & Local Official Results

A joint flyer produced by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, the National Association of Secretaries of State, the National Association of State Election Directors, and the Department of Homeland Security to remind voters that only state and local election officials provide official results.

Reports

Election Infrastructure Security Funding Considerations

A report produced by the Election Infrastructure Subsector Government Coordinating Council to provide direction to the election community regarding possible consideration, both short and long term, for the use of 2018 Congressionally appropriated election funding, as well as to provide support for procurement decisions regarding use of the funding.

Best Practices for Continuity of Operations

A paper providing organizations recommended guidance and considerations as part of their network architecture, security baseline, continuous monitoring, and Incident Response practices in order to actively prepare for and respond to a disruptive event such as destructive malware.

 

 

Topics: 

 

  • Election Security 

  • Collections: 

  • Fact Sheets, 

  • Infographics, 

  • Posters 

 Election Security Resources GuidePDF1.35 MB

 U.S. Electoral Process InfographicPDF386.1 KB

 The Ransomware Executive One-Pager and Technical DocumentPDF782.4 KB

 Election Infrastructure Security Funding ConsiderationsPDF435.61 KB

 Securing Voter Registration DataPDF480.31 KB

 Best Practices for Continuity of OperationsPDF548.06 KB

 HTTPSPDF377.57 KB

 Incident Handling Overview for Election OfficialsPDF1.64 MB

 Ensuring and Securing Your Vote - National AudiencePDF527.2 KB

 Ensuring and Securing Your Vote - State & Local AudiencePDF413.26 KB

 DHS Campaign ChecklistPDF629.2 KB

 Foreign Interference TaxonomyPDF797.37 KB

 Before You Vote- NationalPDF1.01 MB

 Before You Vote- State and LocalPDF1003.18 KB

 Vote with ConfidencePDF322.37 KB

 State & Local Official ResultsPDF672.42 KB

 Leveraging the .govPDF205.15 KB

 DMARCPDF183.76 KB

 Multi-Factor AuthenticationPDF180.53 KB

 Ransomware Guidance for Election OfficialsPDF290.02 KB

Articles from GTSC Homeland Security Magazine, National Security experts regarding ES (Election Security), influence and narrative warfare

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© 2017 Narrative Strategies, LLC. All rights reserved.

The content of this website and publications by Narrative Strategies and the NS team are the sole property of Narrative Strategies, LLC.