Florida Lost Electronic Voting Data

from the nice-move-there dept

The electronic voting story keeps getting worse and worse — especially in, of all places, Florida. We’ve already mentioned how Florida’s e-voting machines had audit trails that didn’t match the actual vote totals and how Florida has a law prohibiting recounts for electronic voting machines. Now, the news comes out that, despite being required by law to keep the data from the machines for 22 months, election officials in Miami-Dade county admit that a hard-drive crash has wiped out the data from some electronic voting machines used in the 2002 election and there’s simply no record of the votes any more. They quickly point out that all the votes were (probably) counted at the time of the election, but (of course) there’s really no way to make sure that’s true at all. It’s also not the real point. This is highlighting (once again) how unreliable these machines are, and without any kind of paper trail, there’s simply no way to go back and make sure that (a) the votes were counted (b) they were counted accurately and (c) they can be counted again.

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Comments on “Florida Lost Electronic Voting Data”

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two crashes? says:

two crashes?

The article says the Florida folks had two hard disk crashes that lost their data. And not on the actual voting machines. How often do hard disks crash?

Just like in 2000, it sounds like they are stealing votes for their chosen winner and blaming it on some lame technology. Since there is no proof, sorry we cant help you prove we stole another election, but you can trust us.

Oh, and you can be sure that your vote will count in November. We will make sure your vote gets counted atleast once for GW regardless of your choice. Trust us.

slim999 says:

The real problem ...

… with eletronic voting is that government employees are simply pretty clueless about technology. Working for a non-profit organization that does business with the government, I’m frequently in contact with high-level systems people who are employed by state, and especially, the federal government.

Let’s just say this: Bananas are not the only things that come in bunches. What a bunch of idiots.

It is sad that we’re going to turn our democracy over to a bunch of people who don’t realize that you should probably back up your data in case your hard drive crashes … but that’s exactly what we are going to do.

We deserve EVERYTHING we get.

akhil says:

Voting machine

A voting system includes the practices and associated documentation used to identify system components and versions of such components; to test the system during its development and maintenance; to maintain records of system errors or defects; to determine specific changes made after initial certification; and to make available any materials to the voter (such as notices, instructions, forms, or paper ballots).
Traditionally, a voting machine has been defined by the mechanism the system uses to cast votes and further categorized by the location where the system tabulates the votes.

Voting machines have different usability, security, efficiency and accuracy. Certain systems may be more or less accessible to all voters, or not accessible to those voters with certain types of disabilities. They can also have an effect on the public’s ability to oversee elections.
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