ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — Gov. Walz doesn’t want a repeat of the foreign interference from 2016 in the next election.
“Better to err on the side of caution and the protection of the system than to pretend it didn’t happen,” Walz said.
But he does want to restore Minnesotans trust in the system.
Speaking to the Policy Academy on Election Cybersecurity at the Capitol, Walz said he was committed to turning what has become a political issue into nonpartisan action.
“I think our job is to stay in our line deal with the facts to focus on those shared values of protecting the ballot box, using what the data shows us and making sure we are secure and let the rest of it fall where it may,” Walz said.
The two-day cybersecurity workshop was at the request of the governor’s office and the secretary of state.
National security experts, election officials and policy makers discussed everything from security resources to response.
“That ability to recover when something happens maintain the integrity of the process and communicate to voters the integrity of the process remains in tact,” Matthew Masterson, senior adviser for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said.
Walz said Minnesota IT Services will be sharing cybersecurity tips on social media, and visiting state offices to instruct employees on best practices and how to recognize and report suspicious emails.
Minnesota was one of only six states chosen to a host a cybersecrity conference. Ultimately the governor’s office said IT services can distribute safety information, but it’s also up to the public to do their part by checking passwords and privacy settings online.