Worst ever security flaw found in Diebold TS voting machine

As a computer programmer and hobbiest for many years, I think I have a good understanding of how computers work from the basic levels of the transistors that record the bottom level ones and zeros right up to the level of high level languages like C and C++. So, I clearly remember cringing when I first heard of the idea of voting machines without parallel paper trails.

Politics, being what it is, there’s no way that people will not take advantage of opportunities to cheat given a chance and a reasonable probability that they will not be caught. Computers are perfect. They are complex, most of what goes on inside of them is invisible and only experts have any real hope of analysing them to see if they are doing what they are suppose to be doing.

So, imagine an election with all of the power and advantage that goes with winning it. And imagine a computerized voting machine that records votes internally and then, at the end, tells you how many votes it recorded for each candidate. And imagine that, since there’s no parallel paper trail to what it’s recording electronically, you simply have to trust that the machine gave you the right results.

Got it? Then read the following and see how secure you feel about our future elections being free and fair.

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SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA — “This may be the worst security flaw we have seen in touch screen voting machines,” says Open Voting Foundation president, Alan Dechert. Upon examining the inner workings of one of the most popular paperless touch screen voting machines used in public elections in the United States, it has been determined that with the flip of a single switch inside, the machine can behave in a completely different manner compared to the tested and certified version.

“Diebold has made the testing and certification process practically irrelevant,” according to Dechert. “If you have access to these machines and you want to rig an election, anything is possible with the Diebold TS — and it could be done without leaving a trace. All you need is a screwdriver.” This model does not produce a voter verified paper trail so there is no way to check if the voter’s choices are accurately reflected in the tabulation.

More…

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Now, if the above story wasn’t enough to give you the willies, follow this link and read about Diebold, the company that created this machine and about the people that work there:

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