Voting machine security

Adam Fields cryptography23094893 at
Tue Aug 19 14:18:12 EDT 2008

On Mon, Aug 18, 2008 at 09:24:33AM -0700, Eric Rescorla wrote:
> Without directly addressing the question of the quality of Diebold's
> offerings, I actually don't think the criticism implied here is
> entirely fair. If you're going to have voting machines, even precinct
> count optical scanners (and because of the complexity of US elections,
> hand counting is quite expensive), you likely want to machine
> tabulate, and that means an EMS. Though you certainly should make
> serious attempts to keep the EMS from coming in contact with outside
> data (see [HRS+08] for some discussion of how difficult this actually
> is), there is always some chance that there will be some
> contact. Generic AV probably isn't that great at detecting or stopping
> this, but it may well be better than nothing, and it's certainly an
> arguable point.

This raises the very real question of what exactly went wrong that
caused the AV software to freak out and "lose" votes. Did the vote
data have a virus signature pattern and get quarantined?!?

				- Adam

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