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Election Officials And Crackers Challenge Diebold 219

Rick Zeman writes "The Washington Post is reporting that election officials in Florida have manipulated election results in controlled tests. From the article: 'Four times over the past year Sancho told computer specialists to break in to his voting system. And on all four occasions they did, changing results with what the specialists described as relatively unsophisticated hacking techniques. To Sancho, the results showed the vulnerability of voting equipment manufactured by Ohio-based Diebold Election Systems, which is used by Leon County and many other jurisdictions around the country.'"
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Election Officials And Crackers Challenge Diebold

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 22, 2006 @06:19AM (#14531682)
    .... or is it second? We'll never know, because there's no paper printouts yet. Damn corporate America, interfering in our democracy!
  • As they say (Score:5, Funny)

    by mgv ( 198488 ) <.gro.namtlev. .ta. .tod2hsals.10.mapsoN.> on Sunday January 22, 2006 @06:21AM (#14531688) Homepage Journal
    To err is human, but to really foul things up it takes a computer.

    After all - people have been trying to rig results for a long time. But this just makes it so easy for one person to potentially change the outcome of an election....

  • by Bush Pig ( 175019 ) on Sunday January 22, 2006 @06:47AM (#14531763)
    More likely:

    if (machine_type == VOTING_MACHINE)
    else /* must be ATM */


    In light of recent disclosures both in the USA (Abramof) and here in Australia (the Wheat Board) I don't trust conservatives to behave honestly. (Not that I ever did, it's just that it's nice to have your prejudices confirmed.)

  • by ajs318 ( 655362 ) <`sd_resp2' `at' `earthshod.co.uk'> on Sunday January 22, 2006 @08:50AM (#14532076)
    This is my idea for a voting machine. It depends for its operation on the idea that when a current is passed through two solenoids in series, both armatures will pull in. The machine itself has two units: the voting booth unit and the presiding officer's unit, linked by a cable. When not being used for an election, the machines would be made available for public scrutiny.

    The voting booth unit {VBU} has a large rotary switch, a pushbutton and a meter with a green zone. The Presiding Officer's unit {POU} contains a power supply, and a column of non-resettable electromechanical counters, all but one of which are covered by a metal plate. This plate is fastened in place with a wire with an aluminium seal bearing the Returning Officer's mark. The counter readings before the start of the election are recorded on a paper label affixed to the underside of the cover plate. There is also a switch labelled "CHARGE" and "VOTE".

    Each voter is issued with a unique, identifiable token -- a postcard with their name and address on it. The voter shows the token {Token One} to the Presiding Officer, who first spoils Token One and then moves the switch on the POU to "CHARGE" as the voter steps into the booth. The Presiding Officer then moves the switch to "VOTE". The voter has now traded Token One for a second token, all of which are absolutely anonymous, identical and indistinguible from one another: Token Two is an electrical charge stored in a capacitor contained within the VBU.

    The voter spins the rotary switch to their preferred candidate, checks that the meter is in the green zone and depresses the voting button. The VBU capacitor is discharged through the coil of one of the concealed counters in the POU. One terminal of each of these counters is commonned together; the current through any one of the candidate counters also flows through the master counter, and returns to the other plate of the capacitor. The charge in the capacitor is soon exhausted, and cannot be replenished unless the Presiding Officer moves the POU switch to CHARGE. The voter then has the option to move the rotary switch to a different position so as to conceal their preference -- or to leave it there to advertise their preference.

    Every voter has a receipt to show that they have voted {the spoiled Token One} but once a vote has been cast, the only record of that vote is the fact that the master counter and one of the candidate counters have advanced by one place. There is thus no way to link a voter with their vote. The master counter is in view of {and the counting mechanism is within earshot of} the PO, who can thus confirm visually and aurally that a vote has been cast {or separately, manually record a "no vote" if the voter leaves the booth without voting for any candidate}. All the candidate counters are concealed until the close of polling, when a few minutes' worth of mental arithmetic will reveal the true count. By virtue of its simplicity, and the fact that it has been subjected to public scrutiny, we can take for granted that the mechanism is behaving as it is supposed to; the Returning Officer need only inspect the tamper-evident seals to determine whether the result is valid or compromised.

    {In case the above constitutes a patent claim, I hereby licence it for use royalty-free in all applicable jurisdictions, in the hope that it will be of service to Humankind}.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 22, 2006 @10:38AM (#14532406)
    Is anyone else disturbed by the racist tone of this story?
  • by damian cosmas ( 853143 ) on Sunday January 22, 2006 @02:13PM (#14533525)
    I agree completely. Take, for example, the manner in which Joseph P. "Bush" made millions from insider trading and stockpiling of liquor during prohibition, supported appeasement of Nazi Germany, and stuck a deal with Joe McCarthy to help his son's senate campaign.

    Then there's the way that John F. "Bush," after a Senate career buillt upon the tacit support of Joe McCarthy, was elected--without a majority of the popular vote--President in 1960, despite allegations of voter fraud in Texas and Richard Daley's Chicago. After delivering an inaugural speech plaigarized from Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. ("...it is now the moment when by common consent we pause to become conscious of our national life and to rejoice in it, to recall what our country has done for each of us, and to ask ourselves what we can do for the country in return."), he made several attempts to assassinate the president of Cuba, began US involvement in Vietnam, and, after repeated humiliations by Nikita Khrushchev, allowed construction of the Berlin Wall.

    His younger brother, Edward M. "Bush," got drunk one night and drove his car into the sea, leaving a female passenger to drown, and promptly calling his lawyer, then going home for the night, leaving the submerged car undiscovered until the next morning.

    Ted's nephew, William "Bush" Smith, had a medical career plagued by allegations of rape and sexual harrassment, including several lawsuits settled out-of-court.

    Replace "Bush" with "Kennedy," and I agree with your assessment. Unprecedented corruption? Hardly.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 22, 2006 @05:29PM (#14534481)


  • by cagle_.25 ( 715952 ) on Sunday January 22, 2006 @07:12PM (#14534938) Journal
    There's something eerie about a man named "Oswald" replying to the post above...

1 1 was a race-horse, 2 2 was 1 2. When 1 1 1 1 race, 2 2 1 1 2.