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Email Voting: A National Security Threat in Government Elections

Author: David Jefferson I am very concerned about the widespread push toward Internet voting in the U.S., of which email voting is just one kind.  Neither the Internet itself, nor voters’ computers, nor the email vote collection servers are secure against any of a hundred different cyber attacks that might be launched by anyone in…


Report on second risk-limiting audit under AB 2023 in Monterey County California

Author: Phillip Stark The second risk-limiting audit under California AB 2023 was conducted on May 6 in Monterey County. The contest was a Special all-mail election for Monterey Peninsula Water Management District Director, Division 1.  Monterey uses Sequoia equipment. There were two candidates: Brenda Lewis and Thomas M. Mancini, and write-ins. 2111 ballots were cast in all.  The reported totals were…


Online voting is risky and expensive

Author: Luther Weeks Online voting is an appealing option to speed voting for military and overseas voters. Yet it is actually “Democracy Theater”, providing an expensive, risky illusion of supporting our troops. Technologists warn of the unsolved technical challenges, while experience shows that the risks are tangible and pervasive. There are safer, less expensive solutions…


Oak Ridge, spear phishing, and i-voting

Author: Jeremy Epstein Oak Ridge National Labs (one of the US national energy labs, along with Sandia, Livermore, Los Alamos, etc) had a bunch of people fall for a spear phishing attack (see articles in Computerworld and many other descriptions). For those not familiar with the term, spear phishing is sending targeted emails at specific recipients, designed to…


Flawed Wisconsin Race Proves Need for Transparency, Accountability in Election Procedures

Author: Rebecca Wilson, When Wisconsin voters flocked to the polls on April 5, one of the factors driving the high turnout was the State Supreme Court contest between incumbent Justice David Prosser and challenger JoAnne Kloppenburg. Prosser, whose term ends July 31, often casts the deciding vote on the seven-member court. He is a conservative Republican former…


Disappointing Reversal on Transparency and Security for Washington Elections

A bill aimed at reducing restriction to voting for military and other overseas voters passed the Washington State Senate by a 47-1 vote on Friday.  Senate Bill 5171 contains many provisions that will certainly make voting easier for Washington citizens living overseas including moving the primary election date two weeks earlier and meeting requirements of…


New York SD 7: Count the Paper

Author: Bo Lipari In the first test case of how we verify election results using New York’s new paper ballots, the State Judiciary is in the process of setting an egregious precedent – Judges are free to nullify audits and recounts in the interests of having a quick decision. In Nassau County’s contested 7th Senate…


Maryland Report – Scanners Cost Less than DREs

A new study commissioned by the state of Maryland has just taken a close look at the relative cost of optical-scan paper-ballot voting systems compared with electronic touch-screen systems, and found that optical-scan paper-ballot systems are less expensive . These findings are timely and important not only for Maryland, but for other states as well. With Maryland’s direct-recording…


Unique Challenges of Election Administration

For most Americans the election has been over for two weeks, but for the state and local officials tasked with administering elections the process continues. Most jurisdictions are involved in the certification process, during which vote totals are confirmed, absentee ballots are tabulated and the status of provisional ballots are determined. Over half the states…


Pulling the Lever for Paper

Author: Bo Lipari The 2010 elections quietly marked a milestone in election technology history. For the first time in over a hundred years, this was the first national election in which mechanical lever machines were not used. Lever machines were at one time so ubiquitous in US culture that the phrase “pull the lever” is…


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