January 27, 2004 12:34 PM   Subscribe

A security analysis of the Pentagon's experimental Internet voting system, SERVE, says it's too vulnerable to be used. An incident in Canada last year highlights the risks. But the Pentagon is standing behind the system, and seven states have signed on. [Via Black Box Notes.]
posted by homunculus (14 comments total)
We've discussed Diebold several times, but as far as I can tell we haven't discussed the SERVE system before. This too is creepy.
posted by homunculus at 12:39 PM on January 27, 2004

Hang on - the *Pentagon*? Why on earth is the DoD funding research into voting? I'd say it's a little far afield of their charter, wouldn't you?
posted by adamgreenfield at 1:01 PM on January 27, 2004

If our government wants us to use a voting system that is too vulnerable to editing, we need to overthrow that governing body on the basis of control.
posted by Keyser Soze at 1:33 PM on January 27, 2004

And I guess that the list of votes and archives of paper votes ( if any) will be a National Sekuritae Sekrut and if you dare ask for it the SS will first do a background check on you to see if you are a dissenting SERVant ?

Btw ..."which will let eligible U.S. citizens vote from any Windows-based computer " ...oh yeah sure so I should trust Windows to deliver my vote as well when I know very well that a secure operating system doesn't exist and will never exist no matter how many engineers you throw on it ? No-fucking-way !
posted by elpapacito at 1:45 PM on January 27, 2004

It's looks like it's under the DOD since it's mainly for use by servicemen and women stationed overseas during elections. Expats and State Dept. folks get to come along for the ride, if their home state is one of those participating. Not saying it isn't creepy, but that's why the Pentagon's doing it.
posted by dragstroke at 1:48 PM on January 27, 2004

dragstroke: indeed it is for what you said ; but don't you think that, with the Terrorist WitchHunt ongoing, somebody may have the "brilliant idea" of using DoD machines and DoD cryprography to protect civilian votes from the evil terrorists who conspire all the day to overthrown the HomerLand ?

Yeah I know it's so 1940 Propaganda (the *group of people* are cause of all evil) but a scared nation may ask DoD to do whatever needed to "protect" them, including messing with their votes ; so if the trial with servicemen and women works must work with civilians too, doesn't it ?

A better "anti-terrorist" measure is plain-old-paper vote
because it takes one second to change 100000 electronic votes to YES from NO , while it takes a very long while and a lot of monetary corruption and involvment with too many people to falsify 100000 paper votes or the recounting of 100000 votes.
posted by elpapacito at 2:16 PM on January 27, 2004

Dragstroke: In the 2000 election the overseas votes were also meticulously counted. A quick excel edit could mean the presidency. Creepy, isnt it?
posted by Keyser Soze at 5:18 PM on January 27, 2004

Internet Voting: because we really didn't know what to do with ourselves without Boss Tweed.
posted by Ptrin at 5:41 PM on January 27, 2004

elpapacito has nailed the talking points - 1) NO PAPER TRAIL, 2) AT A FLICK OF A SWITCH........

I heard this story covered on "Marketplace" tonight (on public radio) - I felt that I was listening to CIA funded Mockingbird shills, or something. They completely ignored all the incriminating evidence against Diebold and soft pedalled the issue, setting it up as a "he said, she said" affair .

No mention of the Diebold CEO's promise to deliver Ohio's electoral votes for GW Bush......
posted by troutfishing at 5:53 PM on January 27, 2004

Nor was there any mention of the trail of "unusual" electoral results and unexpected upsets which often follow the use of Diebold machines.......or of the FTP-able "back door" to Diebold's main data caches. And so on, and so on............

Blech. I like Democracy. Do the voting machine companies like it as well ?
posted by troutfishing at 7:45 PM on January 27, 2004

I've seen several states say they want internet voting too, but man, if people thought that the 2000 election was fucked up, can you imagine what an internet vote would result in? (And for all the paranoids here worried about the government subverting it, quite frankly, do you honestly think our government is smart enough to do that? However, the hackers of the world would have a field day.)
posted by piper28 at 8:59 PM on January 27, 2004

I'm hoping Diebold machines, hopefully of a single standard type, get wide ranging installation for the next presidential election. That way Dennis Kucinich, James Harris or Pat Buchanan can become president and it'll be really obvious there is a problem.

Xs on paper, it works for practically everyone else and is cheap to boot.
posted by Mitheral at 11:11 AM on January 28, 2004

"And for all the paranoids here worried about the government subverting it" - piper28, do you need a recap ? - here is a summary of the Diebold story, as of July '03

Here is a list from July on
posted by troutfishing at 8:20 PM on January 29, 2004

Pentagon Gives E-Voting the Boot
posted by homunculus at 2:35 PM on February 5, 2004

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