TITLE: National Public Information Officer
Inspector In Charge Shen Delivers Remarks on Election Mail Security
TITLE: National Public Information Officer
Washington, DC – USPIS Inspector in Charge, Eric Shen, joined USPS Chief Customer and Marketing Officer Justin Monteith, and USPS Executive Director of Election and Government Mail Services, Adrienne Marshall, to discuss Election Mail Delivery and Security in a media briefing. Inspector Shen provided an overview of the security measures in place for Election Mail. Inspector Shen delivered the following remarks during this briefing.
Election Mail Security
Hi. I’m Eric Shen, Inspector in Charge of the Criminal Investigations Group at the United States Postal Inspection Service.
The U.S. Postal Service backs its mail service with the protection of its own federal law enforcement agency — the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. We are the primary law enforcement, crime prevention, and security arm of the Postal Service. We have local offices staffed in every state and most U.S. Territories. Prevention and investigation into mail theft, tampering with the mail, and mail fraud are staples of our enforcement efforts.
As federal agents, Postal Inspectors investigate these postal crimes, present the results of investigations to the U. S. Attorney’s Office for prosecution, and arrest the bad guys at the end of the day. These federal crimes carry serious penalties, including prison time and hefty fines.
The Postal Inspection Service works tirelessly to ensure the public’s trust in the mail – all mail. That’s our job and we take it seriously.
The unique status of political and election mail makes its security a top priority during every election cycle. Whether a customer is sending campaign mailings, ballot materials, voter registration cards, or absentee ballot applications, the Postal Inspection Service monitors election mail as it moves through the postal network to prevent, identify and resolve any issues that might interfere with its secure and timely delivery.
Election Mail Operations/ USPS Operational Reviews
All 16 Postal Inspection Service field divisions have designated and trained personnel who coordinate election mail security within their divisions. Inspectors also provide Postal Service managers and employees with guidance and recommendations to ensure election-related mail is properly processed and delivered.
Postal Inspectors have unique access to Postal Service facilities. This allows us to regularly review physical security of election mail and the postal workplace. During these times, Postal Inspectors are physically in the facilities conducting on-site security reviews of postal processing plants, business mail entry units, delivery units and Post Offices.
Securing Election Mail Partnerships
The Postal Inspection Service doesn’t just secure the physical mail, postal employees and infrastructure; we also use technology to better utilize Postal Service systems to monitor the mail and deploy other resources throughout the country to help expand the agency’s connection to the postal network.
The Postal Service is considered critical infrastructure by the Department of Homeland Security, Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). Postal Inspectors, working alongside the USPS Corporate Information Security Office, provide protection to the USPS network and the USPS.com website by monitoring threats and responding to cyber incidents. The Postal Inspection Service has established a Cybercrime Group that is prepared to defend against potential attempts by foreign actors to infiltrate the postal network.
Postal Inspectors take a whole-of-government approach to ensure the public’s confidence in the U.S Mail during election season by partnering with other federal, state, and local law enforcement and government agencies. The Postal Inspection Service serves as the interface between all law enforcement agencies – FBI, Department of Homeland Security and CISA — nationally – and the Postal Service to secure election mail.
Postal Inspectors are also members of the Department of Justice’s Election Threats Task Force, whose purpose is to identify and address any issues that might interfere with the security of election mail. Postal Inspectors also work with state and federal authorities to investigate threats to election officials involving the mail.
We also coordinate mail observations with our partners in the USPS Office of Inspector General. Their Special Agents and auditors add another level of expertise and additional sets of “eyes.” Like the many other Inspectors General across the federal government, Postal Service OIG agents investigate instances of fraud, waste and abuse within the Postal Service – and – employee misconduct falls under their purview.
Election Mail PSA
Tips for Securing Your Mail/Contact Postal Inspectors for Election Mail Crimes
The Postal Service is still the bedrock of the nation’s communication’s system. With over 160 million delivery points nationwide, upholding the security of the mail is a team effort. Please follow these tips to keep your election mail secure.
Don’t let incoming or outgoing mail sit in your mailbox. You can significantly reduce the chance of being victimized by potential theft by simply removing your mail from your mailbox promptly every day.
Have your Post Office hold your mail while you are away. Make arrangements online at USPS dot com.
Many states have online tracking tools to help track the status of your ballot. If you believe there’s an issue with the receipt or delivery of your ballot, contact your local election office to verify its status before you contact Postal Inspectors.
Place outgoing mail in a blue USPS Collection Box, mail it at the Post Office, or use a secure receptacle as designated by your local election office.
READY TO ANSWER THE CALL?
If you see a mail thief at work, call the police immediately, then report it to Postal Inspectors at 877-876-2455 .
If you have another concern about your election mail that requires law enforcement attention, again you can contact the U.S. Postal Inspection Service at 877-876-2455
The Postal Inspection Service stands ready to defend against any attempts to disrupt the U.S. Mail, and to continue supporting the nation’s most trusted institution.REPORT NOW