Konnech, the Michigan-based election software management company whose CEO was recently arrested for allegedly storing election officials’ personal data on servers in China, has contracted with the Department of Defense to handle logistics election for members of the Breitbart News service confirmed.
Eugene Yu was arrested by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office on October 4 in connection with the alleged theft of personally identifiable information about county election officials whose data was allegedly discovered on servers in the People’s Republic of China. Konnech’s software, the PollChief Election Worker Management System, has been used by LA County and many other counties across the United States to manage, pay, and communicate with poll workers. LA County says Konnech “was supposed to keep the data secure and only US citizens and permanent residents have access to it,” but said information was discovered on Chinese servers.
In response to a request from Breitbart News, the DoD provided documents revealing that Konnech had been contracted to provide online voting services for the states of Montana, New Jersey and Nevada between July 8, 2010 and January 31. 2011. (BTA) awarded the contracts. Open source documents reveal the existence of an email from BTA to Konnech on April 21, 2010 stating that “BTA would like to offer Konnech a [Blanket Purchase Agreement] for FVAP Assistant support services requirement. The correspondence is titled “FVAP BTA Offer” and is further evidence of a relationship between Konnech and the Pentagon.
Old Facebook posts from an account that appears to belong to Konnech, Inc. also provide further confirmation:
Konnech concluded the 2010 general election after helping uniformed and foreign voters in three states cast their ballots. The very first voter to use our system emailed “this is the first time I can vote since being posted to Iraq”. – November 3, 2010
The Federal Voter Assistance Program, an agency of the DoD, has awarded (2) grants to the City of Detroit for systems to be developed by Konnech. The first is to establish an online system that will allow military and foreign voters to confirm their registration, request an absentee ballot, and receive and track their ballot. Detroit’s second grant is to test the security and usability of mobile apps. In a fictional electoral environment, foreign testers will use the mobile applications to receive, vote and vote. The analysis of the risks associated with the use of a mobile application for the electronic transmission of a ballot paper will be carried out during this election simulation. – March 2012
The Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP) which provides voting assistance to service members, their families, and citizens overseas. Service members receive tips on how to vote by mail as well as other information regarding frequently asked questions. The FVAP website advises interested individuals on how to become voting assistance agents to ensure that military and foreign voters have the support they need to vote. “The Director of FVAP administers the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) on behalf of the Secretary of Defense.”
According to a felony complaint issued by the LA County District Attorney’s Office on Oct. 13, Yu was charged with conspiracy to embezzle public funds and grand larceny by embezzling public funds worth $2.6 million. of dollars. The complaint notes that Konnech used third-party contractors in China to provide services under its agreement with LA County. In particular, a Konnech employee responsible for managing the LA County contract “confirmed via the DingTalk messaging app that any employee working for Chinese contractors on the PollChief software has super admin privileges for all PollChief customers”. The employee described this as a “huge security concern”.
Konnech was founded around 20 years ago and is a Microsoft Gold Partner, which it proudly displays on its website. He also announces that “election logistics software is all we do,” that he has 32 customers in North America, and that PollChief software is used by “thousands of election offices.” He also announces that “election logistics software is all we do,” that he has 32 customers in North America, and that PollChief software is used by “thousands of election offices.” The accusation that Konnech stored the personal data of LA County election officials on a server located in China has placed Konnech and its embattled CEO Eugene Yu under heightened scrutiny, especially given the Chinese Communist Party’s penchant for surreptitious data collection.
BuzzFeed reported in July that data from US users of TikTok, whose parent company is Beijing-backed ByteDance Ltd., is regularly viewed in China.
There is a history of illicit data collection by Beijing, from the hacking of the federal government’s Office of Personnel Management in 2014 to unauthorized access to US TikTok user data provided to Chinese employees, as reported by BuzzFeed. .
Breitbart News has also reached out to Konnech for comment and a list of questions, including whether it continues to serve as an FVAP provider and stores data on servers located in China. Konnech did not respond.
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