Election Manipulation: Is America's Voting System Secure? Reviews

Election Manipulation: Is America's Voting System Secure? : ISBN 978-1-68282-807-6 / eBook: 978-1-68282-808-3
School Library Journal, March 1, 2020

Gr 9 Up—Voter fraud, fake news, and the future of American elections are all explored in Allen’s slim, timely work. Following the 2016 election, faith in the United States’ election system was called into question. Former Director of the FBI Robert Mueller was appointed as special counsel to lead an investigation into allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Mueller uncovered several instances of Russian involvement that attempted to influence the election outcome, namely through social media campaigns and cyber attacks against the Democratic National Committee. The Mueller Report has raised many concerns about the future of American elections. In advance of the 2020 election, U.S. intelligence agencies have warned about future attacks. In response, the National Security Agency and United States Cyber Command are making attempts to combat any tampering with the election. Allen recounts their efforts and then further explains the threats facing the integrity of the country’s election process. Most interestingly, he dives into the world of fake news and the impact it has when widely spread on social media. VERDICT An eye-opening look at a current problem that challenges American democracy.
—Kevin McGuire, Woodland Hills School District, PA

Election Manipulation: Is America's Voting System Secure? : ISBN 978-1-68282-807-6 / eBook: 978-1-68282-808-3
Booklist, March 15, 2020

This timely and informative book warns that Russia and other countries like Iran and China will almost certainly try to interfere in the 2020 presidential election, as special prosecutor Robert Mueller’s report found that Russia did in 2016. The book mentions recent instances when election computer systems were hacked and ransomware attacks occurred. It describes the real-world consequences that can occur when people are influenced by fake news on social media. Instances of voter database tampering and other ways the voting process has been interfered with through hacking of voting machines or voter registration lists are detailed. Innovations are suggested to make the voting process more secure in the future, even as their advantages and drawbacks are acknowledged. Ripped from the headlines as this resource is, it may soon become dated, but it’s a comprehensive look at how the voting system has been manipulated in the past, and it offers ways to safeguard it in the future. Thoroughly sourced, it’s useful for student research and for anyone interested in America’s voting system.
—Sharon Rawlins

Election Manipulation: Is America's Voting System Secure? : ISBN 978-1-68282-807-6 / eBook: 978-1-68282-808-3
Kirkus Reviews, February 1, 2020

A short but trenchant overview of a topic guaranteed to dominate headlines this election year."They're doing it as we sit here." Robert Mueller's warning in his Congressional testimony sets the urgent tone. "Election manipulation," as used in this volume, focuses specifically on digital threats which are addressed in three distinct categories: the hacking of campaigns and other political entities; the use of social media to spread disinformation and propaganda; and tampering with the actual process of voting, including exploiting the vulnerabilities of voting machines. Allen looks at each in turn, emphasizing examples from the 2016 U.S. presidential election but with references to the 2018 U.S. midterms and European elections as well. Russia and Russian-sponsored entities are called out as the chief bad actors, but the dangers of North Korea, Iran, China, and domestic perpetrators are not discounted. The crisp, energetic prose endeavors to be nonpartisan but clearly disapproves of the priorities of President Donald Trump (and several other Republican politicians), repeatedly noting their indifference to and dismissal of the seriousness of the issues and their obstruction of proposed remedies. While the overall message is alarming, Allen emphasizes that basic awareness and common-sense safeguards can go a long way to improving security. The sources cited are all up-to-the-minute; color photographs and informative text boxes enhance the work. Terrifying and timely. (source notes, further reading, index, photo credits) (Nonfiction. 12-18)