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Voting Machines Touted as Secure Option Are Actually Vulnerable to Hacking, Study Finds


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The ImageCast X ballot marking device.

Researchers at the University of Michigan found that ballot-marking devices lack sufficient safeguards from hacking.

Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Researchers at the University of Michigan (UM) found that ballot-marking devices (BMDs), which will be used as the default voting machines for at least 18% of U.S. districts in November’s presidential election, lack sufficient safeguards from hacking.

BMDs let voters cast their votes using a computer touchscreen, and produces paper records of those votes.

In the study of 241 people who voted on BMDs in a simulated election and had at least one of their votes changed by the system on the printed-out ballot, researchers found just 40% of people reviewed their ballot and only 7% informed a poll worker something was wrong.

The researchers concluded that if hackers changed 1% to 2% of votes in a close election, they would not be discovered.

Said UM’s Alex Halderman, "There is a strong security reason to prefer hand-marked paper ballots."

From The Washington Post
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Abstracts Copyright © 2020 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


 

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