FBI increasing efforts to protect 2020 presidential election from fraud, outside influences

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — As the 2020 presidential election draws closer, the federal government is ramping up its efforts to make sure every vote counts, and no outside influences affect the final results.

WREG spoke with a FBI agent who says the FBI has been working to secure the presidential election since January.

The FBI has been battling issues like voter rights, polling integrity and outside influences for decades, but 2020 presents unique challenges.

“Those sort of things have always been consistent, but some of the cyber threats and the threats we’re facing from foreign actors and how they’re trying to influence the election has evolved,” said Special Agent Douglas Korneski.

The FBI says it’s prioritizing a fair and honest election.

“A free and fair election is the cornerstone, the bedrock of American democracy,” Korneski said.

While they wouldn’t give away the exact details behind how they’re preparing for and protecting the election, a major push is focusing on educating the public, and working with private businesses that could be at risk of being hacked by foreign powers.

“Our relationship with the private sector, social media companies in particular, we share more information now than we ever have,” Korneski said. “They’re able to action and help mitigate some of those issues on those platforms.”

Some believe there’s a strong chance the next president of the United States won’t be announced on election night, but that is not necessarily an indicator of fraud.

The FBI says there is a massive amount of work going on behind the scenes.

“If we do everything correctly, and we take all the precautions, the public will never know that there was any potential threat to the election,” Korneski said.

The FBI has numerous resources to the public. If you’re concerned about any crimes related to the election, or any issues at all, you can click here to leave a tip with FBI Protected Voices or call Memphis’s FBI office at 901-747-4300.

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