Online voting? “Premature,” says government cybersecurity expert

Online Voting ‘Premature,’ Warns Government Cybersecurity Expert
Pam Fessler

Warnings about the dangers of Internet voting have been growing as the 2012 election nears, and an especially noteworthy one came Thursday from a top cybersecurity official at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Bruce McConnell told a group of election officials, academics and advocacy groups meeting in Santa Fe, N.M., that he believes “it’s premature to deploy Internet voting in real elections at this time.”

McConnell said voting systems are vulnerable and, “when you connect them to the Internet, that vulnerability increases.” He called security around Internet voting “immature and underresourced.”

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One thought on “Online voting? “Premature,” says government cybersecurity expert”

  1. As usual, the article avoids the core issues.

    The problem is not so much external hackers, it’s that the voting systems are DESIGNED to be hacked and/or miscount votes. The proof is simple:voting machine source code is propretary. How come computer security expert Stephen Spoonamore is allowed to view Diebold’s ATM code, but not Diebold’s voting machine code?

    There can be just one reason. And its not a good one.

    DRE voting systems from Premier (Diebold), ES&S etc. are unverifiable by design. If optical scanners are used, the ballots are not hand-counted, so what is the point of paper ballots?

    Listen to Spoonamore in this video:

    Why is it that no one in the media or the government discusses the fact that rigged voting systems that have been in use for years?.Or asks why voting machines are manufactured by right-wing corporations with a clear agenda? Or why software is proprietary so that no one can determine how the machines are programmed to miscount votes?

    One can only conclude that corrupt election officials and politicians in both parties want votes miscounted because a) they fear fair elections (the Democrats would win every presidential election and permanently control the House and Senate), b) they have to go along with the charade to keep their jobs and c) the myth of a 50/50 electorate and a fully democratic 2-party system must be maintained at all costs.

    Only Oregon, a 100% paper-ballot state which allows early voting by mail or by hand-delivered paper ballots, has mandated randomly-selected county recounts. And the system has worked just fine since it was installed in 1998. Here is the mathematical proof:

    Rather than the current voting systems that are designed to miscount votes, we need systems that are designed to work. It’s that simple. That means data redundancy, robust audits, open, non-proprietary source code, collaborative design (not by r/w hacks), and voters having the facility to confirm their votes. What’s wrong with that?

    It also means letting experts check the code and agree that it would work. As Steve Spoonamore has said, the system needs only to add votes. It should not contain code to subtract votes -as it was in certain r/w systems.

    And let’s remove the profit motive.The software should not cost a dime, like Linux. It should be “freeware”. Linux is only the world’s most popular Internet server Open Source operating system. A voting system must be robust and collaborative like Linux not only to work, but to have the voters trust that their votes are being counted accurately..

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