Paul Pate calls election security a ‘race without a finish line’

Secretary of State Paul Pate said Thursday that Iowa can’t let up on cybersecurity efforts despite a lack of tampering in the state’s 2020 elections.

Pate joined cybersecurity and misinformation experts Thursday for a conference on election cybersecurity. He reported that the 2020 election went “fairly smoothly” in Iowa. All 99 Iowa counties had a 100% match between vote tabulators and a hand count audit from the November 2020 election, he said.

“The one thing that’s important for Iowans to remember, if they have cybersecurity concerns, is that we vote on paper ballots,” Pate said. “You can’t hack a paper ballot.”

Even so, Pate said, “election cybersecurity remains a race without a finish line.” He said the state is working continually to ensure Iowa’s elections are safe against cyberattacks.

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