Lack of Discussion on Voter Security Tech?

The Biggest Security issue facing the country is the non-partisan topic of voter fraud. just days previous to the election, there were all kinds of serious revelations concerning these machines in mainstream media. If this is not an issue that deserves airing on at least the Security Now show, I don’t know what does.
(Awaiting response of “You don’t know what does”)

I decided to do a little youtubing to see what’s out there. Here are two of many reports, revelation, expose’s which are of concern no matter what your political persuasion. Others I found were by various local news, CNN, Jorge Ramos, NBC etc

~ PBS


~ AP

What do you all think? Is this worthy of at least an episode segment?

Welcome to the community!

That’s a pretty hefty statement which I think I’d disagree with. It’s certainly a topic that deserves attention, but I don’t believe it’s the biggest security issue facing us right now. I’d place it below industrial/infrastructure systems, healthcare systems, and private industry systems to start with.

Voting machine security is the very first level of protection in the grand scheme of an election. Considering these voting machines are computers, we can never expect them to be 100% secure. So in addition to voting machine security, election results are audited following an election. This helps to ensure election results have not been tainted. Compromising the myriad of different voting systems would be such a large effort that I’m confident it would be discovered during this audit process.

The Dept of Homeland Security’s CISA has a nice summary of the facts surrounding this concern - Rumor Control | CISA

Regardless of the efficacy of such an attack, it is something I’d enjoy seeing on TWiT or SN. Actually I’m pretty sure Steve Gibson has done at least one segment on voting machines. Certainly not the first time the topic has been in the headlines.

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They have covered voting machines several times on SN over the years.

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It’s like social media censoring. Liberals either think it doesn’t exist or they don’t care about it. Since it is affecting conservatives it’s a bigger deal to them. I guarantee the election results were flipped there would be plenty of discussion about it. These Dominion voting systems a couple years ago the Democrats were complaining about, but they are silent now and if someone posts those videos on social media it gets tagged with a warning or removed altogether.

The biggest issue is both sides get their information from different sources that hide what their side doesn’t want to hear. So you really can’t have a discussion since both sides have different facts even if both sets of facts are true.

As for the voting this time it’s an embarrassment all around. This is 2020 and not 1820. Counting the vote should not take a week. I live in Las Vegas and there is one race that didn’t get certified because the number of voting irregularities was greater than the margin the winner won by. The GOP and the Trump campaign sued to get some of this fixed before election day, but the judge threw it out saying they didn’t have standing. There has to be a better way.

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Election fraud is the siren call of conservatives. Sure it’s possible, but it’s much more likely that a corrupt government is rigging the election than it is that rando’s are out there committing election fraud. Even if you commit fraud, it’s only going to affect a single small geographic area (a county, say.) Anything bigger than that is going to involve State level co-ordination. Elections are statistical events. There are statistical norms and you can compare voting in one area with another. Any anomalies can (and should) be investigated, and are. If you believe in conspiracy theories, then anything is possible, and there is no point hacking an election when you can be out there doing more powerful things that conspiracies allow. Please bring facts or you’re just being a sore loser (or winner.)

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It is an issue the world over wherever voting machines are used, but not the biggest issue, just a current one.
Each year for a few years the annual security and hacking conventions have made a feature of the section dedicated to hacking voting machines.
I think it was last year the youngest person to hack one was 11 years old.
Relatively speaking they are abysmally easy to hack, and the supporting systems as easy to manipulate the input or collected data.
The topic comes up regularly in security and tech press, but that is not where the general public get their news.

Security researchers agree that electronic voting systems are a bad idea unless backed up by a hard-copy system.
Microsoft put forward a proposition to deal with the problem, which is the closed source nature of the companies providing machines.
Historically the companies object to any security researchers getting access or them being sold second-hand.
Microsoft offered to operate an open source project to set a basic standard for companies to use, but I doubt they will take up the offer unless forced to.

I would suggest that election fraud is the siren call of whoever lost in which ever year you care to pick, unless they prefer to blame another country for interfering.
You can pretty much guarantee fraud during an election in various ways, and this year will be no different to previous ones.
Identity-theft and miss-attribution, stuffed ballot boxes, dead people, babies and pets casting a vote.
Unless a miracle happened then yes both camps will have cast fraudulent votes, and both sides will have tried to change the vote, just as both sides will vehemently deny any fraud on their part, and making an assumption that dishonest people only vote the opposite way (because we know there is only 2 options).
Anyone who says fraud has not happened during an election must believe that 100% of voters are honest people (excluding the leaders of China and North Korea).

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Having worked on teams in the past that have run national elections (Angola and Bosnia), it is a thankless task and even if you run it 100% correctly, somebody will always claim there was unfair play. The boxes are sealed, the counts carried out before official witnesses, nobody allowed in or out, once the counting has started.

In Angola, we had to ask the government to stop listening in on the phone lines, because it broke our internet connection (their kit was so old, it made a loud click every time it switched in, causing the modem to drop the line). After the election, the rebels, who lost, claimed the election was corrupt and our team were evacuated laying in the back of Toyota Landcruisers and Land Rover Defenders, with the security guards having a running gun battle with the rebels to the airport!

(Luckily, I was only providing IT support back at head office in the UK.)

Given all the hard work involved and that with hand-counted re-voting, the results haven’t changed, I would say the US situation went off very mildly in comparison. I would think a big round of applause should go to all involved in counting the votes for putting their lives at risk during this time of COVID, to ensure that the election went off without any major fraud.

Where I live, in Germany, it seems to still be all-paper ballots.

Voting machines are a problem, in that they are not openly tested and certified by an independent body - and when such things are tried, Siebold and Co. try and get the machines confiscated or sue for supression of the results, but the new open-standard should change things, going forward.

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A couple of episodes came up when I searched. I’m sure Steve has discussed a few times.

Have no experience with machines here. We are still pen and paper, and even the counting is manual. I think there’s been a few trials for mayor elections, but that’s about it.

Aren’t these systems air-gapped/offline? I read news reports of voter data being collected on USB sticks and taken somewhere central for tabulation.

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@CGalvan, direct recording electronic voting machines are a problem, but the solution is so obvious only US states that don’t want easy security use them. States that use hand marked optically scanned paper ballots avoid the potential problems. The optical scan method has been in use for over 50 years now and has never had a significant security problem.

@lvthunder, let us know when there is any actual evidence of significant* voter fraud in a US national election. So far there has be zero evidence provided that any significant* fraud has occurred in the past 20 years. All the significant* fraud allegations when looked into by Congress or in court have been found to be false.

*yes, there have been a couple people caught filling in their dead relatives absentee ballots but even a hundred cases like that is not significant in a 150,000,000 person election.

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@PaulHutch most of the lawsuits so far haven’t got to the point where the evidence has been presented. In Pennsylvania, the State Supreme Court threw the case out saying that they filed the lawsuit too late. In other cases (even cases filed before the election) the judges have said the RNC doesn’t have standing to file the suit. We will see what happens in Nevada at the end of the week where a judge is allowing the Republicans to present their case. I live in Las Vegas and this is more than just the Presidential race. We have a local race that was decided by just 10 votes. So if 500 people illegally voted after they told the post office they moved to a different state that could affect that race.

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The last time voter machine security was discussed on Security Now the main point of discussion was that testing the machines is difficult because the manufactures actively try to suppress any independent testing.
Other ways of cheating are systemic or social. In some counties the clerk will check the mail-in ballots on election day with death certificates issued since the last election and toss out ballots that match. But not every clerk does that since their job is usually elected not based on skill.
Lots of collages try to register students to get them to vote, so it does tend to skew the vote of collage towns.
These are systemic problems since there are at least 50 different systems that don’t talk to each other, nothing technical can be done until a political solution is made. Building more secure ballot boxes is nice, but only scratches at the underlying problem.

I just enjoy the irony that the states were the allegations of voter fraud are in have republican dominated governments that are defending the election results that Biden won. So is there massive fraud enabled by incompetent state leaders benefiting the other party, or did Trump lose by a narrow margin, just like he won last time by a narrow margin.

what percentage of fraud is your threshold? The statistics of this election are pretty amazing how they indicate things that what had to happen in the exact counties and exact states did. We will never know if there was enough fraud or mistakes to turn the election one way or another but there will always be a smell clouding this election, a big asterisk attached. It seems to me there is enough smell to warrant further investigation, but oh well maybe it is OK if many are satisfied.

It seems to me there is enough smell to warrant further investigation

That’s the thing - there’s essentially nothing to investigate because there is an insufficient trail of crumbs to follow. To the best of my knowledge, there is no accusation that someone hacked the election by altering votes after they were cast. Pres. Trump has accused at least one vendor of election software of “changing” votes cast for him, but there is no evidence of this - nor could there be. No one knows if the number of votes for Pres. Trump in Podunk, PA was really 1206 even though the clerk’s count returned 1177.

Nor was there evidence of vote-counting fraud when randos have accused election vendors of such malfeasance in past years, such as 2004 when John Kerry ultimately decided against publicly accusing Diebold (whose executives were publicly supportive of George Bush) of fraudulent vote tallies.

For me, as an individual voter in a state where paper voting receipts are not required, I have little choice but to trust my county clerk’s office on the accuracy of their tallies. I have no way to verify their machines were not hacked, nor should I. If I could do such an audit, that would also imply crooks among the general public could also have access to the machines to “verify” (aka hack) them.

I personally would prefer paper ballots everywhere, because it is much simpler to audit. A voter in Iowa marks a box next to the name Charles “Chuck” Grassley to vote for their long-time Senator. Easy for voters to understand, easy to machine count, easy to hand-count if needed, and a higher chance of catching ballot-counting malfeasance because a meaningful audit can be conducted. In this case, a meaningful audit would store the ballots from each precinct separately, and do a manual count of the few hundred votes cast in one or two precincts in the county, selected at random a day or two after the machine count is complete, so they can be compared to the machine count.

I haven’t said anything about partisan supervision of counting processes, or signature verification processes, because I don’t know what best practices, or state laws, require on this topic.

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I agree with you about paper ballets and the need to secure them for a period of time. I don’t necessarily think the “winner” would change, I just am appalled at the ridiculous ways this election has been managed. There is no excuse that people can’t vote in a timely manner, with proper observation by all parties involved. All citizens deserve a system they can have faith in without relying on statements of people with vested interests in the outcome.

Despite the comments from the MSM claiming there is no credible allegations of voter fraud… There are TONS of issues and specific allegations in multiple states… All ya gotta do is take the time to look… In many states, there have been many hearings on these issues in the past week or so… With incredible stories of unbelievable fraud…

Just this week alone, there was a hearing (I forget which state), and the person testifying about detailed voter fraud had his Twitter acct frozen while he was testifying. I heard the name and state on the radio earlier today, but I do not remember it - otherwise, I would post it here… But, does that sound right? C’mon… All those here opposed to removing legal protection from Twitter against law suits… Does that sound right?

If ya wanna claim the hundreds of sworn affidavits of witnessed fraud (sworn under penalty of perjury) are false, we sure had less than that during the impeachment… Or when they tried to derail a supreme court nominee. Then, whistleblowers had to be believed. But now? Not…

All these years of “anonymous sources?” That’s ok. But many people are putting their names out there with specific fraud stories… NO news coverage at all…

No matter what side you vote on, people here and everywhere should be outraged by the stories coming out… Mention them on Big Tech platforms, and you will be removed. That’s not right… All the while, the mainstream media ignores all of it… Wow…

No election in this country can be believed if this manages to skate by…

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But no evidence. Stories of affidavits, but no proof these are real and not more stories. You herd on the radio, but can’t remember details. Meaiwhile…
Republican states and their staff backing the results to their detriment speaks volumes for the validity of the results.

The only voter fraud I know of was a county party leader bragging about voting in 2 counties back when I was in collage. He took advantage of a loophole in the county registration since his company was in one county and he lived in another. How do you catch things like that? The system let it happen and probably still does.

Fraud at the scale talked about needs the people in charge to make it work, like when Mayor Daily tossed ballots for Nixon into Lake Michigan and replaced them with votes for Kennedy. But that is not the case here. The burden of proof is on the people making the allegations to submit proof, not stories. Maybe it did happen, but can it be proven?

Future elections will be fine. The various systems used in each state will get looked over and county clerks not doing their jobs will hopefully not get reelected and things will change a bit for the better.

I can probably list 20 news stories right now - of exact, specific details. Hell, I saw 3 people on tv tonight, being interviewed - they testified today in fact, in 1 of the states holding hearings…

But then, the sources I post from will just be called “biased” here. So, if you really want to know about voter fraud, you can search out the stories yourself… You obviously are not aware of what has occurred, or you would be outraged too.

I get that this site is made up of 99% left leaning people. If you want to stick your head in the sand, feel free. I’ve brought up other issues in the past, with specific links and details… But, it’s never enough. I’m not going to type a mini novella of examples. Believe what ya want, but everything is not ok.

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The New York Times: Barr Acknowledges Justice Dept. Has Found No Widespread Voter Fraud.

Your fighting a losing battle here. Trump managed to piss off just enough old supporters to lose. He won by a narrow margin last time and lost by an even narrower margin this time.

He has good trade policy, but his consistent tweeting allowed people an unpresadented view into a sitting presidents thinking and they were not impressed.

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I’ve read many of these affidavits and watched hearings. One observation is that I’ve yet to hear any facts or statement that a crime was observed. The language used is very careful, they say ‘in their opinion’ or ‘in my view’ to side-step the perjury aspect.

That guy who had his Twitter account suspended, for example, I watched that. It was Michigan I think. His evidence was that he’d worked through the election results and ‘in his professional opinion’ as a ‘tech/mathematical expert’ he ‘suspected the numbers were fraudulent’. and then he immediately caveated his statement with ‘assuming the data that I got was accurate’. None of this stuff will progress IMO.

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