Presidential election interference is possible – Beware of dirty tricks

The Cybersecurity Center tells you what kind of digital harassment you should be prepared for in connection with elections.

Both the presidential elections and the European Parliament elections require thorough preparation from the ministries and agencies down to the individual polling stations.

Commissioned by the Municipal Development Foundation (Kaks). recent survey according to the majority of Finns are worried about cyber attacks and data breaches. 82 percent of the respondents considered the threat of these to be either very or rather serious.

According to the Finnish Transport and Communications Agency’s Traficom Cyber ​​Security Center release, it is very difficult to influence the information systems by attacking the election method in use in Finland, where voting is done with ballots.

– The reliability of manual vote counting cannot be affected by cyber attacks either, the authority reassures.

A denial of service attack is like a traffic jam

However, in its announcement, the Cyber ​​Security Center highlights some situations that can be seen in connection with the elections.

Although denial-of-service attacks cannot affect the election result or its reliability, according to the authority, the attacks can cause interruptions to, for example, the display of real-time results.

However, service blocking attacks have also been prepared in connection with elections, the Cybersecurity Center assures.

Denial of service attacks are about congesting a service so badly that it is temporarily impossible to use it. More than 10,000 of them are made annually in Finland against websites and services of various organizations.

– A denial of service attack is mostly like a traffic jam. Waiting in line is annoying, but in most cases traffic safety is not compromised and after a while the world is back on track, Director General of the Cyber ​​Security Center Sauli Pahlman stated in the agency’s announcement in 2022.

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You can try to influence the outcome of the presidential election, but denial of service attacks are not an effective way to do that. All Over Press

Endless information

Efforts can be made to influence the electoral success of an individual candidate, for example, with the help of social media. This can happen, for example, by publishing irrelevant information or by making it difficult for the candidate and his campaign team to communicate.

The Cyber ​​Security Center urges to be “healthy suspicious” of possible situations where unbelievable-sounding claims are published about a candidate right before election day.

– Do not redistribute false content, but first try to confirm the information and find out what it is about, it reminds.

You can also try to confirm baseless information with deeply faked videos or audio recordings, i.e. so-called deepfake material. Fakes created with the help of artificial intelligence are already so advanced today that it is not necessarily easy to distinguish them from the real thing.

Sources: Cyber ​​Security Center, Cyber ​​Security Center, Municipal Development Foundation