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Six States Tapped by NGA for Election Security Policy Academy

The National Governors Association has selected the states to undergo cyberattack policy and response training geared toward helping them better prepare for the 2020 presidential elections.

Six states will have tougher cybersecurity measures in place when the 2020 election begins to heat up.

The National Governors Association (NGA) selected Arizona, Hawaii, Idaho, Minnesota, Nevada and Virginia to participate in the NGA Policy Academy on Election Cybersecurity after a "highly competitive" application process, according to a release.

Election officials, staff from the six governors’ offices, and personnel from executive branch agencies will work together to develop response plans for cyberattacks on election infrastructure. The academy is meant to foster idea sharing, open communication and cooperation between the entities involved.

Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak expressed his excitement about his state’s selection today in a media release.

“Free and secure elections are the bedrock of a strong and healthy democracy, and by participating in this policy academy, Nevada will be able to share our successful election security practices with other states to strengthen elections nationwide,” Sisolak said in the prepared statement.

NGA staff will provide technical support throughout the duration of the policy academy, which will run from June to December.

The program is the product of a partnership between NGA and the University of Southern California. It is supported by the National Association of State Election Directors and the National Association of Secretaries of State. It is funded, in part, by the Democracy Fund.

Patrick Groves was a staff writer for Government Technology from 2019 to 2020.