The Department of Homeland Security and the Election Assistance Commission convened Wednesday with election stakeholders to organize a coordinating body for sector-specific policies, strategies and activities.
The meeting with election industry representatives as well as local and state election officials worked to launch an industry-led Sector Coordinating Council to be finalized by the new year, DHS said Thursday.
David Wulf, acting deputy assistant secretary for the Office of Infrastructure Protection at DHS, said the SCC framework is designed to facilitate the sharing of threat intelligence between federal government and council partners with the aim to help agencies map the industry’s security landscape and enhance risk management efforts amid evolving threats to the electoral process.
DHS said the introduction of the industry-led council is part of DHS’ election systems security efforts that includes the creation of the Government Coordinating Council for the Election Infrastructure Subsector in October.
The department also included the election infrastructure as a subsector of the existing government facilities critical infrastructure sector in January 2017 in order to give priority to cybersecurity assistance for state and local election officials.
The designation also intended to define globally that election infrastructure is covered under the U.S. government’s protections for critical infrastructure as well as facilitate dialogue on exploration of sensitive vulnerability information between DHS and key stakeholders.
DHS established GCC and SCC in efforts to engage government and the private sector with initiatives for the security and resilience of critical infrastructure sectors set by the Presidential Policy Directive 21-Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience.