[E-voting] NON-PARTISAN GAO REPORT CONFIRMS CONCERNS ABOUT SECURITY OF ELECTRONIC VOTING MACHINES!

Catherine Ansbro cansbro at eircom.net
Fri Oct 21 20:42:00 IST 2005


[from BradBlog]
http://www.bradblog.com/archives/00001940.htm
BREAKING: NON-PARTISAN GAO REPORT CONFIRMS CONCERNS ABOUT SECURITY OF 
ELECTRONIC VOTING MACHINES!

REPORT: 'Loss and Miscount of Votes in Recent Elections'!
House issues BI-PARTISAN Press Release: Report 'A Wake Up Call', 
'Foundation of Democracy Rests Upon Security, Integrity of our Voting 
System"

"[C]oncerns about electronic voting machines have been realized and have 
caused problems with recent elections, resulting in the loss and 
miscount of votes."

That's just one of the chilling revelations from the non-partisan 
Government Accountability Office's (GAO) 107-page report on the security 
of Election Voting Machines in America as just released moments ago. The 
report confirms many of the greatest concerns expressed by those who 
have called for Election Reform since the deeply flawed 2004 
Presidential Election.

The report "analyzed over 80 recent and relevant reports related to the 
security and
reliability of electronic voting systems." The results confirm a range 
of security vulnerabilities and violations in Electronic Voting Machines 
in recent elections and the accompanying systems used to administer 
elections in the United States of America. It goes on to say that the 
issues brought to the attention of the GAO by elected representatives, 
activists and other concerned citizens, "merit the focused attention of 
federal state and local authorities responsible for election 
administration."

The GAO report (download complete report here [PDF]) was created in 
response to a request by several members of the U.S. House Judiciary 
Committee.

A joint bi-partisan press release touting the findings of the report has 
just been issued by three Republican and three Democratic Congressmen 
including Government Reform Committee Chairman Tom Davis (R-VA) and 
Ranking Member Henry A. Waxman (D-CA), Judiciary Committee Chair F. 
James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) and Ranking Member John Conyers (D-MI), and 
Science Committee Chair Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY) and Ranking Member Bart 
Gordon (D-TN).

While The BRAD BLOG is still perusing the details of the extensive 
report, some of the key findings are listed right on the front page:

Examples of Voting System Problems and Vulnerabilities.
# Cast ballots, ballot definition files, and audit logs could be modified.

# Supervisor functions were protected with weak or easily-guessed 
passwords.

# Systems had easily picked locks and power switches that were exposed 
and unprotected.

# Local jurisdictions misconfigured their electronic voting systems, 
leading to election day problems.

# Voting systems experienced operational failures during elections.

# Vendors installed uncertified electronic voting systems.

<more>
[The full article includes the complete GAO press release and a link to 
the ecomplete GAO Report.  It seems almost unbelievable that the full 
extent of the problems is finally being publicly admitted.  I hope this 
report doesn't get buried in coverage of Hurrican Wilma, or by Special 
Investigation indictments that are due next week.  --Catherine]
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