Diebold e-Voting Machines Can Be Opened With Standard Hotel Key Available Online

from the great-security dept

As Diebold continues to try (weakly) to defend itself from yet another batch of evidence that their security isn't particularly secure, Ed Felten points out another weakness in Diebold's defense. The company likes to claim that on top of the computer security aspect (which study after study has found is lacking) they have "physical" security. Avi Rubin's report from the field last week showed that the "security tape" and "security tags" on the machines aren't particularly secure at all (removing them and replacing them without anyone noticing is easy -- and apparently done quite often). However, a colleague of Felten has also noticed that the "lock" on the box uses an off-the-shelf standard key seen for things like hotel minibars. Apparently, it's quite easy to buy an identical key online or at an office furniture shop. In other words, the physical security isn't so secure. It's just designed to look secure, so they can say it's secure.

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  1. identicon
    Kevin, 21 Sep 2006 @ 11:20pm

    Not even a 1337 g33k can understand this...

    I am a self-proclaimed computer geek, and I am a registered voter in the independent city of Virginia Beach, VA. Last May, when the city council and school board elections were taking place, it had to take some explanation on how to use the dang thing, and I still couldn't understand how the system worked. Being exposed to computers at an early age (age four with a Tandy TRS-80 Color Computer, then an Apple IIe [I seem old--but I'm only 29!]), I should be able to know how to use the machine without any explanation from the election official that happened to volunteer that day. Now the idea of the machines can be hacked by a simple key that I can purchase at my local office supply store? WTF? Now this sounds odd. FWIW, the people I voted for in that election may now have meant nothing. Something is going down. And now since everything can now be done online (well, almost anything), why not take the elections online? It may save the taxpayers some money. Oh, wait. There may be some n00bs who don't even know how to do so. To put it this way: we live in a corrupt society and these politicians will do anything that it takes to win the elections, at any cost. Just ask George Allen and Jim Webb... Phil Kellam and Thelma Drake.

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