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Election commission says 26 states have received cybersecurity funding ahead of midterms

Election commission says 26 states have received cybersecurity funding ahead of midterms
© Greg Nash

The Election Assistance Commission (EAC) on Tuesday released a list of 26 states that have requested and received cybersecurity funding, money that aims to ensure state's voting systems are properly secured ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.

An EAC press release broke down which states have requested the cyber funds as well as how much they received.

To date, these states have requested nearly $210 million in newly available funds, or about 55 percent of the total amount available.

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The funds were distributed under the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018, a bill passed by Congress that allocated $380 million in funds to the Help America Vote Act (HAVA).

“This steady stream of funding requests from the states demonstrates an undeniable recognition that this money can have a tangible and immediate impact on the efficiency, security and accessibility of our nation’s elections systems," EAC Chairman Thomas Hicks said in a statement.

"The Commission has diligently worked with states to distribute these new funds as quickly as possible. It is anticipated that all jurisdictions will submit funding requests by mid-July,” he continued.

Texas received the largest funding grant at $23 million, followed by New York at almost $19.5 million, and Florida in a close third at roughly $19.2 million, according to the list.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) had issued a request for the funding in a letter on Thursday, noting that foreign actors targeted Florida in the 2016 presidential election and that they could seek to target the Sunshine State again in the upcoming midterms.

By Monday, EAC told Rubio that they had granted his $19.2 million request.

"I am pleased to report that the United States Election Assistance Commission has reviewed Florida's disbursement request and approved the request in one working day. We expect funds will be in Florida's account this week," Brian Newby, EAC's executive director, wrote to the Florida senator.