With the looming midterm elections, a majority of America is ready to head to the polls in November to determine who will be representing their state in the House of Representatives and the Senate. Russia’s efforts to hack the 2016 presidential elections served as a wake-up call that still reverberates among the cybersecurity community today, and while no actual votes were impacted at the polls, the real damage created was tied to the many misinformation campaigns directed at voters.

What can security practitioners learn about the election meddling in 2016? It’s all about the human side of security, says Dr. Richard Ford, chief scientist at Forcepoint.

“As far as we know, there isn’t a single vote that was changed from red to blue, or blue to red,” Dr. Ford told InfoSec Insider during a recent interview shot at the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. “But there were a lot of influence operations that occurred…and that shined a light on issues around privacy, and we’ll be dealing with those privacy impacts for a very long time.”

While there are plenty of lessons to be learned from those events, especially leading up to the midterms in November, it may be more difficult to act on those lessons from a technical standpoint, Dr. Ford adds. But leveraging multi-factor authentication and behavioral analytics is a start.

In the full video interview below, Dr. Ford discusses the impact that the 2016 election meddling had on the cybersecurity community, and the lessons learned that security practitioners should take note of, but most importantly, act on.

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 Anthony Garand