While most campaigns are likely to have security infrastructure, volunteers are not employees, and some may not encounter the same protections offered to campaign staffers. Additionally, volunteers may work from remote locations, where they may use convenient public Wi-Fi, making them more susceptible to being hacked.
The “I Protect” protocol was created by cybersecurity experts at InvinciBull and sourced from the Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, the Democratic National Committee and the FBI.
The “I Protect” Protocol Recommends
Ask for instructions. When you sign-up to volunteer, ask your campaign about its cybersecurity protection strategy and follow its guidelines to the letter. Then …
Keep all of your devices and apps updated. Updates often include security fixes designed to keep hackers out.1
Make passwords impenetrable.
Use different unique, long passwords for every account. You don’t have to remember them all. Install simple-to-use password managers, like LastPast and 1Password. You create one unique long password for your password manager, and it remembers all of your other passwords for you.
Two-steps to get in.
Enable two-factor authentication for as many apps and websites as you routinely visit. This means that you need both a text message with a code and a password to log-in to a specific app or website.
Make sure all websites you visit are protected by https. If not, use https everywhere extension, which will secure them for you.
Use a trusted, secure VPN.
It’s a good bet you’ll use public Wi-Fi on the campaign trail. Encrypt all data on public Wi-Fi with a personal VPN. A VPN creates a secure tunnel to the Internet and masks the origin of your data, so hackers can’t see what you’re doing. To learn more about how VPNs work watch this FBI video.
Get it and forget it.
Don’t keep more data on your devices than you need. Make it a habit to delete old emails, texts and documents.
InvinciBull Secure Democracy Initiative
This protocol is part of a broad initiative by InvinciBull, the US-based VPN, aimed at helping protect political campaigns from hacking by nation states and other rogue actors intent on disrupting the democratic process. InvinciBull VPN is available to all campaigns and their teams at no cost for the length of the campaign. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details.