Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Our Homegrown Vote Hackers

Hah! While the hysteria over supposed Russian 'influence' in an American election continues, evidence that the illegal manipulation is happening closer to home continues to mount. Anonymous Conservative links to FRACTION MAGIC – PART 1: VOTES ARE BEING COUNTED AS FRACTIONS INSTEAD OF AS WHOLE NUMBERS.

One Bev Harris appears to run the site, and she thinks she has found code- from as far back as 2003- that allows votes to be counted as fractions. I am not sure of her credentials, besides being so completely against these voting machines that she started a site and got pretty organized. Here's bit on hypothesized execution of fractional voting:

For 15 years, GEMS has been described as flawed and full of security holes. Smith may be one of the first researchers to express respect for GEMS’ sophistication. Researchers have pointed out that with GEMS, votes can be flipped to reverse candidate totals. Smith counters that in a real election such an approach would appear almost cartoonish, with Black Democratic strongholds voting for White Republicans and vice versa. At the very least, simple vote-flipping is reckless and imprecise. On one level, GEMS enables crude manipulations by local users, but on a deeper level it offers refined and scaled-up control to persons who are provided with a specific kind of utility.

So, when voting manipulation of the type that Schneier warns about will it be Russians, or the usual American suspects?

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