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Vulnerable Voting Machines Could Taint Election Results!

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posted on Sep, 16 2006 @ 09:07 PM
Not that it has happened yet,(or has it?) but the possibilities are there for an election to be stolen electronically via the same type of computer wizardry that brought us Napster.
Five years ago, computer science professor Ed Felten challenged the music industry by cracking the codes designed to stop music from being copied. Two years ago, he wrote software to show that peer-to-peer networks couldn't be regulated. Now he's broken into another type of supposedly secure data: election results. On Wednesday, Felten, along with computer science graduate students Alex Halderman '03 and Ariel Feldman, released a paper detailing flaws in the Accuvote-TS, an e-vote machine manufactured by Diebold, Inc

"If someone had physical access to one of the machines for less than a minute, they could install vote-stealing software or infect it with a virus that would spread to other computers," Halderman said.

Felton criticized Diebold for failing to ensure the security of its e-vote machines.

"We think that there were not many precautions taken in the design of this system against insertion of malicious software, which is the kind of attack we've primarily looked at," Felten said. "It is much too easy for a moderately-skilled programmer to carry out this attack and steal votes in an election."

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

When was the last time an election was stolen? with the possibilities of hackers breaking into a system through the use of malicious software, we could see it happen this coming election. If a moderately-skilled programmer is all that is needed to carry out an attack what's to stop a highly skilled one from doing the job, and doing it undetected.

This raises the question of whether or not something like this has been done before under our noses.

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[edit on 20-9-2006 by UM_Gazz]

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