Diebold, a politically well connected maker of touch-screen voting machines used in some parts of the United States, comes under new fire for the lax security of their machines.
Some months ago, researchers at Princeton demonstrated that someone with only 60 seconds of access to an unlocked Diebold box could insert a virus which could silently switch votes without a trace. The virus could then spread from machine to machine, potentially affecting the entire voting system. The Princeton researchers pointed out that a mechanical key was required to get into the box. Until now.
Voting security advocate Brad Friedman is reporting that Diebold has made two seemingly unfathomable errors. Friedman reports that:
1) Every Diebold machine use the same low-tech key to open the door to the box.
2) Diebold posted photos of the keys on their website, which have been used to make working copies.
I am not an expert, but it seems clear to me that a voting system without paper receipts is, and will remain, a terrible idea.