For all the discussions back and forth about the problems with voting machines, I hadn't seen the details of what was wrong with most of the Diebold machines until reading this interview in Salon with the person who discovered the security hole, who describes in straightforward terms just how easy it is to hack an election on a Diebold voting machine. Even worse, when she posted that information, along with some internal Diebold memos admitting that they've known about the flaws for years and, in fact, knew that the system was being misused - Diebold told them to take the memos down as they were infringing on Diebold's copyright. This was incredibly shortsighted for a variety of reasons. First asking activists to "take something down" from the internet almost guarantees that the opposite will occur. The documents will get spread far and wide and will get a lot more publicity. Even worse, though, in claiming copyright over the memos, Diebold was admitting that they were, in fact, internal memos that Diebold held the copyright on. Basically, they were admitting that their machines have security holes which they knew about - and that they'd done some fraudulent things around that fact. As the article points out, a very simple solution to all of this would be to produce machines that include a paper auditable trail. Diebold could have even gotten away with admitting their mistake and coming out with new, auditable machines. Instead, they tossed a ton of money at a PR and lobbying campaign designed to convince people that the clearly hackable machines were perfectly fine.
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