Two Questions for Sunday; One Easy the Other Not So

A Las Vegas hacking competition resulted in U.S. election machines being hacked within 90 minutes, across multiple vendors and from multiple locations. Does anyone think Russia’s intelligence agents, supposedly the world’s best, couldn’t have done the same?

Is there any voting system that is immune to cheating?

Views: 115

Comment by Rodney Roe on July 29, 2017 at 9:47pm

I was thinking dip your right index finger in permanent ink and putting your finger print on a paper ballot in the right box.  All elections would be held on a national voting holiday.  No one with ink on that finger could enter a voting booth.

Of course we used to do things much like that and records would be lost to courthouse fires.

Comment by MV Neland on July 30, 2017 at 1:23am

Diebold has made voting fraud by machine a perennial mass practice. The 2016 election had five machines in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania with their tamper proof seals ruptured. Trump team successfully blocked Stein's investigation into those machines in court. Nowadays a thumb drive can be slipped into a voting machine and replace every vote with a different one without a trace. A single machine can carry thousands of votes. In Wisconsin, machines randomly spewed out false winners while over 300,000 black and Latino voters were illegally scrubbed from the rolls just days prior to the 2016 general election. Not even half got reinstated by court order in time to vote by last count. In North Carolina, a Republican election board member was arrested for removing hundreds of Democratic names from voter rolls a judge had recently ordered reinstated after it was found that their initial removal was flagrantly racist.

So, for me, why ANYONE can say with ANY certainty that Trump won because HRC failed must outright reject the evidence of widespread voter machine tampering, voter suppression, and gerrymandering on a scale heretofore unseen before. Our digital machines haven't been safe since the election of 2000. Prior to that date, people had to physically, rather than digitally, "disappear" votes into swamps, destroy them in fires as Rodney mentioned, or carry them away in the trunk of squad cars or dishonest election officials.

Then there's the hacking, too. President Jimmy Carter requested that the U.S. bring in outside election observers after the 2000 election debacle based upon the lawlessness and untractability of U.S. elections in many states.  We have more trustworthy elections in Oregon because we use scannable paper mail-in ballots that are automatically compared to voter signatures on file, a system much like they use in Canada.

Comment by MV Neland on July 30, 2017 at 2:26am

The Russians paired the Cambridge voter data metrics Trump Team purchased for millions of dollars using an artificial intelligence platform with their disinformation propaganda from Macedonian false media outlets (single page, single story, no prior history gone the next day media outlets parroted on social media, Breitbart, and Fox News, most likely by a Team Trump IT personnel placing the personal data of hundreds of millions of Americans on an unsecured url for several weeks that was accessible by simply using the url, if you knew it.

Both the Columbia and Cambridge IA metrics platforms may become outlawed for use in future elections as it allows unprecedented manipulation of voters without their permission or knowledge. It may also be reconsidered to make it illegal to coordinate such information for election purposes with a foreign government.  Currently, many scholars believe that it is not, however morally ambiguous and predatory. But, the ability did not exist prior to the 2016 election, and therefore the laws governing their use have not caught up. This is distinct from a foreign government colluding to intentionally interfere with a U.S. election through fraud or voter suppression or giving goods and services by said outsiders to U.S. candidates to effect the election in unlawful ways. It must be shown that either a quid pro quo, money, or a mutually beneficial action was shared between Trump Team and Russia in order to charge collusion. Giving out public data on U.S. consumers may not qualify because the gift goes to Russia rather than the other way around. However, if Trump received campaign contributions in the form of money or valuable dirt on HRC or his other opponents, then charges might be brought. Or, if a link can be shown (beyond a coincidental pattern...something more solid like an actual fingerprint in the form of a Putin order or a collusive email between Macedonia, Putin, and Trump that matches Trump campaign themes or strategies or revelations against opponents with activity from false news stories, then that would probably be considered highly illegal, if not downright treasonous by many. Trump's and Giuliani's many timely predictions of soon-to-be-announced breaking news on HRC is one example, priming the pump with promised revelations while they waited for all the players to do their respective parts, like Russia reverse engineering DNC memos to make it appear as though Sanders is being closed out and betrayed as selective Wikileaks dumps hit the newspapers, and Macedonia fake news stories spin the dumps as Putin praises Trump. All too easy to manipulate a public already primed to distrust anything outside their safe zones. Every voting block got a specific and different message and spin on the same subject that would most resonate with them and confirm their particular bent or bias. Like making a ruckus in a crowd in order to pick the pockets of the distracted bystanders. 

Comment by Steel Breeze on July 30, 2017 at 4:37am

retinal scan,vote,leave......but,nuthin built by man is younger bro started in puters in early '70s and has headed the puter depts for many top companies.he says when a new system was developed,it was not released until they were able to defeat it in lab,so everything was 'hacked' b4 we saw it.......

Comment by Rodney Roe on July 30, 2017 at 5:02am

MV, that is an incredible amount of information that I've never heard.

In the good old days when Orville Faubus was governor of Arkansas five terms, there was a fire in the Madison County Courthouse - his home county - destroying the votes several times.  Maybe every time.

Ironically, he was a Democrat and Winthrop Rockefeller (one of those) a Republican, was elected and cleaned everything up.  Of course, he was a moderate, pro-business, Republican like used to exist.

The hackers were required to do the hacking remotely, but it the thumb drive port was mentioned in the article.

Comment by koshersalaami on July 30, 2017 at 5:02am

Paper backup for everything. Only safe way.

And the election can't be investigated when the party in power blocks the investigation while the press is run by companies who like the party in power. 

Any system immune to cheating? Some more so than others. There could, for example, be a double paper trail, with results going to two points. 

Comment by JMac1949 Today on July 30, 2017 at 7:37am

Easy solution: stand alone machines not connected to the internet.  Count and compile results on controlled memory sticks.  Not internet, no hacking.

Comment by Safe Bet's Amy on July 30, 2017 at 7:56am

I personally have no issues with electronic voting, I just have issues with Diebold (the crooked basters that have been fined tens of millions for corporate bribery!).

For example if they'd implement true internet voting (which would include voter ID verification against squeaky clean voter registrations) and follow up on and stridently prosecute discrepancies it would be faster, easier AND more secure.  I mean they let us file our taxes on line, FFS!  That will never happen though because it doesn't make the Corpocracy any more money.

Comment by Rodney Roe on July 30, 2017 at 12:29pm

Amy, not only would it not bring more money in, political parties would be busy trying to insure that their voting base was not adversely impacted.  Carter was right.  Bring in a third party to set up a fair and impartial and secure system.

Breeze I like the retinal scan, like in Blade Runner.  That didn't end well, but it has possibilities.  Also, the vote would have to go into a national base.  I know a man who said he voted in New York and in Florida because he owned property in both states.  He thought his vote should be worth at least twice what someone without property counted.

Comment by MV Neland on July 30, 2017 at 2:10pm

@everyone - all good suggestions for an issue that historically invites dishonest - winning power.


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