TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Diebold Source Code Leaked Once Again

Re: Diebold Source Code Leaked Once Again

Scott Dorsey (
26 Oct 2006 16:00:06 -0400

Robert McMillan, IDG <> wrote:

> Kagan, however, wasn't so sure, saying that the security of the source
> code raised concerns. "The idea that it could be that readily
> available and could be delivered to me and who-knows-who-else around
> the state [is disturbing]," she said. "Who know what any other people
> may be doing with it?"

Who knows what Diebold is doing with it?

The source code for all voting machines NEEDS to be freely available,
and citizens need to be able to look at it. If the source code is not
available, how can anyone be sure that the voting machine is doing
what it is supposed to be doing?

And how can being able to look inside the voting machine in any way be
a security breach? If seeing inside the operation of the voting
machine is a security problem, we have given up on democracy. The
whole point of the democratic election process is that everyone SHOULD
be able to look inside every part of the voting process.

How can I be sure that my vote is being counted if I am casting it
into a black box whose internal software is a complete unknown? As
long as the voting machine is a closed mystery, how can we be sure
elections are free and fair?


"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: No one can be positive on this at all.
That's one reason I have never been too harsh with Diebold and thier
work with elections. Either they can be trusted or they cannot be
trusted. But beleive me you, coming from a background in Chicago, Cook
County, Illinois, in my lifetime I saw so many _totally outrageous_
things done in _supposedly_*fair* elections, I was thrilled to see the
first sign of progress when they began automating elections. You want
to complain about Diebold in elections? Why not complain about all the
dead people voting and police officers who hang around polling places
ostensibly to 'help' voters in Chicago with their choices? Election
fraud did not begin with Diebold, believe me. The Chicago Board of
Election Commissioners -- supposedly a non-partisan operation
intended to secure the integrity of elections in that city -- turns a
blind eye at the shenanigans which go on there intended to insure
that the 'right' people get elected.

What about 'precinct captains' (little minature politicians with loud,
yapping mouths who drive bus loads of elderly voters from nursing
homes to the polling places) who then walk inside the polling places
with their passengers while wearing their buttons or T-shirts telling
for whom to vote? The rules about 'no electioneering within 100 feet
of the polling place' mean nothing to them. By the way, when the
polling place is inside a school or church, they start counting the
100 feet from the door of the room being used rather than the outside
street entrance to the building. What about the television and radio
stations who announce the winner the very _instant_ the polls close in
the east, in effect discouraging the west coast voters from bothering
to vote at all?

No, I have no objection to Diebold as such; any automated and
relatively secure (and 'relatively secure' is the keyword here) voting
scheme is fine with me. After all, the computer does not care who
gets elected, only people care. I saw way too much crap in manual
elections in the past to worry that much about Diebold. At least with
Diebold, if the intent is to have an honest election, the Diebold
machines (if not rigged) will eliminate human error in vote counting,
etc. Try voting in Chicago for Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon,
Carter, and the three or four following, observe all the nonsense
and see if you care. Scott, is your complaint about computerized
elections in general, or Diebold specifically? PAT]

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