Blog on the Run: Reloaded

Thursday, October 26, 2006 7:43 pm

How to steal an election

Filed under: Black-box voting — Lex @ 7:43 pm

Like plans for the atom bomb, instructions for stealing an election with paperless touch-screen electronic voting machines are now available on the Internet:

What if I told you that it would take only one person—one highly motivated, but only moderately skilled bad apple, with either authorized or unauthorized access to the right company’s internal computer network—to steal a statewide election? You might think I was crazy, or alarmist, or just talking about something that’s only a remote, highly theoretical possibility. You also probably would think I was being really over-the-top if I told you that, without sweeping and very costly changes to the American electoral process, this scenario is almost certain to play out at some point in the future in some county or state in America, and that after it happens not only will we not have a clue as to what has taken place, but if we do get suspicious there will be no way to prove anything. You certainly wouldn’t want to believe me, and I don’t blame you. …

Over the course of almost eight years of reporting for Ars Technica, I’ve followed the merging of the areas of election security and information security, a merging that was accelerated much too rapidly in the wake of the 2000 presidential election. In all this time, I’ve yet to find a good way to convey to the non-technical public how well and truly screwed up we presently are, six years after the Florida recount. So now it’s time to hit the panic button: In this article, I’m going to show you how to steal an election.

Now can we please have voter-verified paper ballots and mandatory, robust auditing of all elections nationwide?


  1. One word. Chavez !

    Comment by Fred Gregory — Sunday, October 29, 2006 4:35 pm @ 4:35 pm

  2. Workers of Acorn a liberal activist , union backed group have been incdicted in Missouri and sevewral other states for submitting phony voter regitstions . They operate in 38 states and perhaps the Justice Dept. will connect the dots and get serious about putting an end to masssive voter fraud.

    Voter ID Needed

    Comment by Fred Gregory — Friday, November 3, 2006 3:35 pm @ 3:35 pm

  3. And did you notice that it was ACORN itself who turned the guys in?

    Comment by Lex — Friday, November 3, 2006 4:55 pm @ 4:55 pm

  4. It was the US Justice Dept that filed suit to force the State of Missouri to remove the dead from the voter rolls post haste. The Democrat controlled Missouri Supreme Court tossed out the Voter ID law.

    The Missourian newspaper had an enlightening story about the voting dead:

    Likewise The Poughkeepsie Journal had a similar story that the NY database of registered voters has potential and fraud. The US Justice Dept also had to sue the state of NY.

    Democrats want fraud, need fraud and are good at it. And ACORN is glad the employees were indicted. . Ha . That’s a knee slapper. Surely, Lex, you must be aware that they have a long history of these same tactics in other states. Well read it for your self. They seem to encourage this behaviour. Bring us your dead, your children and Acorn will sign them up to vote

    Comment by Fred Gregory — Friday, November 3, 2006 9:30 pm @ 9:30 pm

  5. Fred, every trial court in the country that has had to rule on a voter ID law has found it unconstitutional (and all but one appeals court), which suggests to me that there probably is some sort of legitimate constitutional issue there (maybe poll tax, maybe something else — without reading all the filings, I dont’ know). That being the case, I’ve already said that if the Constitution must be amended to require voter ID, then we should amend it — and you know how much I hate monkeying with the Constitution, so you should understand how much this puts me on your side of this issue.

    As for ACORN, even if every example in every case on the Macsmind list had been substantiated — and many were not — that’s still, in total, far less damage over many, many years in many locations than electronic hacking can do in a single location in a single election. So, please, let’s keep our eye on the ball, shall we?

    Comment by Lex — Saturday, November 4, 2006 6:14 pm @ 6:14 pm

  6. Let the recounts begin.

    Comment by Fred Gregory — Saturday, November 4, 2006 7:58 pm @ 7:58 pm

  7. Excellent overview on the problems, except that it’s too U.S.-centric. Most other large democracies handle balloting with a small fraction of the problems we have.

    Comment by Lex — Saturday, November 4, 2006 9:43 pm @ 9:43 pm

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