Episode 22: Election Security in New Jersey

The election infrastructure subsector is complex and includes both physical and cyber assets, including voter registration databases, voting machines, and other systems to manage elections and report results, as well as storage facilities, polling places, and centralized vote tabulation locations.

In advance of the New Jersey primary on June 6, Erin Henry, Principal Planner in the Preparedness Bureau at NJOHSP, sat down with Michael Geraghty, State Chief Information Security Officer, and Robert Giles, Director of the State Division of Elections, to discuss New Jersey election systems security and efforts in New Jersey to keep these election assets secure and the voting process free from interference. Although there are no specific or credible threats to election systems in New Jersey, the FBI confirmed cyber attacks on voter registration systems in Arizona and Illinois in 2016.




Director, New Jersey Division of Elections

Robert Giles was appointed to the position of Director of the New Jersey Division of Elections on May 1, 2008.  Prior to this, he was employed by the Ocean County Board of Elections beginning in 1995 working as an investigator, a voting machine technician, an assistant supervisor and supervisor. He is an Adjunct Professor for Rutgers University’s Center for Government Services teaching Election Administration. Mr. Giles is currently a member of the Standards Board for the United States Election Assistance Commission. He is also serving as the Standards Board representative on the Technical Guidelines Development Committee which is responsible for developing the next set of federal standards for voting equipment. He is currently a member of the Council of State Governments Election Technology Working Group. He served as a member of the Department of Homeland Security’s Cyber Unified Coordination Group for the 2016 Presidential Election. He is the President Elect for the National Association of State Election Directors and served as Vice President of the New Jersey Association of Election Officials and was a member of its Legal and Legislative Committee.


Director, New Jersey Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Cell (NJCCIC), State CISO

Michael Geraghty is New Jersey's Chief Information Security Officer and the first Director of the New Jersey Cybersecurity & Communications Integration Cell (NJCCIC) located at the Regional Operations Intelligence Center. Director Geraghty manages the day-to-day functions of the NJCCIC, the State’s central hub for cyber operations and resources.

Director Geraghty brings a wealth of public- and private-sector experience to this role, having served as Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) of the Hudson’s Bay Company, Chief Information Officer of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and Vice President of High Technology Investigations at Prudential Financial. Previously, Geraghty served 12 years with the New Jersey State Police, where he led the formation and development of the High Technology Crimes Investigations Unit.

Director Geraghty has lectured extensively throughout the world on the topic of cybersecurity, high tech investigations and computer forensics, providing technical and investigative assistance to law enforcement agencies both domestically and internationally, including the FBI, Secret Service, Department of Homeland Security, Naval Intelligence, New Scotland Yard, and the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary Service. He has provided expert testimony before Congress and in federal, state, and international courts on computer crime investigations and forensics. Geraghty is also a past president of the Northeast Chapter of the High Technology Crimes Investigation Association and has held leadership roles in the National Strategic Policy Council on Cyber and Electronic Crime.