The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Saturday, October 22, 2005

GAO examines accounts of vote fraud

It's good to see the wheels grinding away on this issue. There obviously isn't much chance of substantive action while the GOP controls both legislative branches, but the issue needs to be kept alive.

"[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." (. . .)

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.