Tuesday 30 December 2003

And in other news...

Guess what? A firm which specializes in electronic voting was HACKED! May be POLITICAL! (duh...) Here is your future folks electronic voting ripe for the picking. I am all for electronic ballots. I think punch cards are a terrible thing. Hanging chads are the devils work. However before I step in to a booth I want a paper receipt for my vote. I want to be sure that who I voted for is who is counted. Of course even with a receipt in my hand I can only be sure that I voted for the correct person I can't be sure of the count, because what is there to count? Events in an audit log which is an electronic text file ripe for editing? Vote tampering has never been so easy. A few quick keystrokes and voila! Now there is the nasty matter of flash memory contained in each voting machine. These are the "audit" trails, the fall backs. They are also programmable. Rather than WORM products which are write once read many devices where once written they cannot be erased or written to again, these devices can be read wiped and reused as often as you like. Even between the ballot box and headquarters. They fit inside digital cameras! Do you think they could have used SDDR cards? No they went with Compact Flash devices. SDDR are marginally safer technology admittedly newer technology, but still. Fudging digital records is a lot easier than creating 1000's of paper ballots.

I suppose I eventually will need to trust the system. That the elections officials in these United States are above politics (why are so many political positions?) and are immune to being duped or duping us. These are the same people who rushed out to embrace electronic voting as new and good without thinking about how it could be compromised. At least that is what I am hoping. What if they knew it could be compromised and chose it on purpose? Paranoia strikes deep in the Heartland...

Posted by Philip at Tuesday 30 December 2003 | TrackBack
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