Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Internet voting faces the music. SC voting machine bugs. Ireland trashes EVMs

About the DC Internet vote hack, Dr. David Jefferson says "Let there be no mistake about it: this is a major achievement, and supports in every detail the warnings that security community have been giving about Internet voting for over a decade now."..The U. of Michigan team changed cast ballots to write-ins like HAL 900 of "2001: A Space Odyssey" ...MAJOR writeup about SC's voting machines, computer scientist says machines would get an 'F'..Election expert testifies at trial on Shelby Co TN election irregularities..Ireland scraps EVMs, tired of paying storage fees...

All this and more in today's voting news below...


CA: County's mail ballot will need 61¢ postage
Sacramento County's registrar of voters is warning that extra postage is required to return vote-by-mail ballots.

CT: Ann Coulter to Face Vote on Voter Fraud Charges in CT by State Elections Enforcement Commission
"This case is scheduled to appear on the October 14, 2010 public session. We expect the Commission will vote on this matter at that time."

KS: Should the state require you to show ID?

MD: Early votes to be tallied earlier
Early-voting totals must be processed and submitted two hours before polls close on general election night, according to an emergency regulation the state elections board approved last week.

Former candidate seeks Bing’s immediate removal due to massive irregulaties in vote “This law suit is not sour grapes or a refusal to accept an election loss, rather it’s about 59,135 of 114,718 ballots which the public does not know were un-recountable and irregular...."

ND: Benson County won’t have polling site on reservation
MINNEWAUKAN The Spirit Lake Reservation will be the only reservation in North Dakota without an on-reservation polling site this election.


NY: Voter was right to be skeptical
66e3e840177490.txt By Virginia Martin, Democratic Commissioner of Elections. I and my counterpart, (Republican) Commissioner Nastke, believe that the only way we can be confident that we’ll know how the voters voted — which we must know before we can certify the results — is by counting every single vote on every single paper ballot that was scanned. Therefore, while what the scanner might show the voter on its screen might be interesting, no voter should be reassured by what that screen reveals, because it could be wrong.

NY: Libertarian Party, and Anti-Prohibition Party, Sue New York Over Refusal to Print Nominees’ Name Twice on Ballot

NV: RNC mails 200,000 absentee ballot request forms to wrong county, has to do
robocall to inform voters
* The Republican National Committee recently mailed an estimated 200,000 absentee ballot request forms into Clark County – but a warning on the form instructs people who have never voted in “Washoe County” that they can only use the mail ballot under strict circumstances. (form and flyer posted)

OH: Morgan County suit seeks money to pay for election
ATHENS, Ohio - The Morgan County Board of Elections, worried that it won't be able to pay for the election Nov. 2, has sued the county commissioners for more money.

OH: Election board in hitch over trailer
Republicans don't want Democrats to park signs near early voting site

SC: Gambling with Democracy
Experts Question Quality of South Carolina Voting Machines After Buell had finished his presentation — during which he’d called the voting machines “buggy,” “unstable,” “exploitable” and “not professional quality stuff,” among other things — he told the commission that he’d wondered why the kind of knowledge he’d just dropped on them hadn’t ever been presented before.
“This is not conspiracy theory; this is simply looking at this as a computer system and doing an analysis,” Buell told the Election Commission Sept. 25. “I think — and what I tell people and am willing to tell the world — is we should be voting on a machine that at least passes muster as an undergraduate computer science effort. And it doesn’t. If I got something like this from a graduating senior … my inclination would be to grade them an F.”

SC: Citizen's Audit of South Carolina's Voting System
Obviously, the State Election Commission has been put in a difficult position, preferring not to admit we spent the majority of our $48.5 million in HAVA and state funds on a shoddy product to run the most important function in our democracy.

TN: Election Expert Testifies at Trial on August Election Irregularities* MEMPHIS, Tenn. - An expert on election procedures testified in Chancery Court she believes more than 10,000 ballots cast in the August Election could be questionable due to alleged mistakes in the voting process.

TX: Woman, 81, jailed in vote-fraud case
Bexar County deputies Monday night arrested a woman accused of using her long-dead sister's identity to vote twice in the 2008 general election.
Mary Ann Comparin, 81, was released from Bexar County Jail on Tuesday after posting $10,000 bail, officials said. She faces one count of illegal voting.

WI: Early Ballot Mailer Upsets Voters
Terry, a Milwaukee resident, got a mailer with City Hall's address and a big plea to cast an early ballot.

"I thought this was being sent by the elections commission," Terry told TODAY’S TMJ4 reporter Tom Murray. "When I opened up it up, that's when I was surprised."

Internet Voting Watch

Hacked Voting System Stored Accessible Password, Encryption Key *
An internet-based voting system that was hacked last week by researchers at the University of Michigan stored its database username, password and encryption key on a server open to attack.
The hack left lots of traces that an intrusion detection system should have caught. Nonetheless, it went unnoticed for two business days until Friday afternoon when several testers directed election officials to the Michigan fight song playing on their $300,000 voting system.

Michigan prof explains how D.C. online voting system was hacked
The University of Michigan computer science professor who led the team that successfully infiltrated an Internet voting trial held by the D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics has stepped forward to describe how he did it.
The researchers, once inside, changed the ballots that had already been cast to select their preferred write-in candidates -- famous real and fictional computers, including HAL 900 of "2001: A Space Odyssey" and the Master Control Program from "Tron." They also installed a "back door" that allowed them to view votes that came in.

Internet Voting Faces The Music: Hats off to D.C. and Michigan

Testers submitting votes complained of the annoying music playing on their computer after voting...
There are several states planning Internet voting pilots under the MOVE Act. We and others have warned of the theoretical risks of Internet voting and specifically the pilot provisions of the otherwise valuable MOVE Act. Will this clear demonstration of vulnerabilities cause states and Congress to sing a different Internet voting tune? We hope so, yet we doubt it.

Hacking the D.C. Internet Voting Pilot - By J. Alex Halderman
The specific vulnerability that we exploited is simple to fix, but it will be vastly more difficult to make the system secure. We've found a number of other problems in the system, and everything we've seen suggests that the design is brittle: one small mistake can completely compromise its security.
The meaning of Alex Halderman's successful attack on the DC Internet voting system
by Dr. David Jefferson Computer Scientist, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Chairman, Verified Voting
It is now clear that Halderman and his team were able to completely subvert the entire DC Internet voting system remotely, gaining complete control over it and substituting fake votes of their choice for the votes that were actually cast by the test voters. What is worse, they did so without the officials even noticing for several days.

Verified Voting Lauds Successful Test Hack of Internet Voting Pilot Verified Voting applauds the decision of the District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics to suspend their plan to offer overseas voters the dangerous option of returning their voted ballots by a “digital vote by mail” Internet voting system. The District’s plans to continue other Internet-based ballot return methods (including email and fax) for the District’s military and civilian overseas voters still raise concerns among voting security experts.

D.C. Internet Vote Scheme Hacker: 'Within 36 Hours We Had Total Control of Server, Ability to Change Votes, Reveal Secret Ballots'
University of Michigan's J. Alex Halderman fesses up... ..your Congress has allocated millions of federal tax-dollars via the Military and Overseas Voting Empowerment (MOVE) Act to pay for these Internet Voting pilot project experiments which use real voters in real elections as guinea pigs to test this unoverseeable technology.

Details Of How The DC Online Voting System Was Hacked: Small Vulnerability, Huge Consequences
They also changed all the votes to write-in candidates they liked and set the system to automatically change all future votes to the same candidates. You can see the ballot that they used to replace all of the votes below.

Boing Boing: Alex Halderman's totally epic hack of the DC internet voting system pilot program

DC tries online voting system, only to have it hacked to death. Instantly.


Why don't Hispanic registered voters vote?

Exclusive: Foreign-Funded ‘U.S.’ Chamber Of Commerce Running Partisan Attack Ads

Former Attorneys General and Law Professors Call on Congress to Examine Constitutional Amendment To Reverse Citizens United

Erbe: Ramifications of mail-in balloting It's already changing the way campaigns are run and TV ads are bought and placed.

Federal Voting Assistance Program, DoD If you haven't received your ballot by now, you should be using an electronic alternative to get the ballot, fill it out, print and then send it in. Go to today!

Rock the Vote The Varsity Girls out of New England, decided on their own that they would put together a video to encourage their fans to register to vote. If you haven't yet registered and live in a state that still has voter regitration for the 2010 Election, watch this video and get registered to vote.


€51m e-voting machines to be disposed of Taoiseach Brian Cowen has said that the e-voting machines in storage are to be disposed of, after costing the Exchequer €51m.

51m euro voting machines scrapped
The government was advised the 7,000 machines could be open to manipulation
The Irish government is to write off more than 50m euros it paid for electronic voting machines eight years ago and which have remained unused.

The government was advised the 7,000 machines could be open to manipulation.

It has had no serious offers to buy them and Irish Prime Minister Brian Cowen has said they are now to be disposed of.

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