Brazil To Let Hackers Try To Crack E-Voting Terminals

from the good-for-them dept

One thing that never made much sense was how vehemently the big e-voting manufacturers fought pretty much every single attempt to let outside computer security experts try hacking their machines. They often made excuses about how this wouldn't be fair under "non-real-world conditions," but never explained how it would be bad to at least let these hacks proceed to learn from them and use them to strengthen the overall security of the machines. Thankfully, it looks like voting officials in other countries are a bit more open to this concept. Slashdot points out that Brazil opened up a "challenge" allowing security experts and other hackers to request to take part in a big hack attempt on e-voting equipment. Not only that, but the government is going to give $5,000 to whoever successfully hacks into one of the e-voting systems. This seems like a much smarter way to check the security on these machines than the previous method of very basic gov't oversight and the e-voting firms issuing a big "trust us," answer to every question.

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  • identicon
    Stute, 2 Nov 2009 @ 2:23pm

    I love America sometimes...

    This is the only country where slot machines have a higher standard than voting machines.

    More power to Brazil for doing this! Maybe the US gov't will learn something (hah fat chance of that) from this.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    PaulW, 2 Nov 2009 @ 3:14pm


    I have to ask the question, if you manage to hack one of these e-voting machines do you tell everyone and collect your $5,000 or do you keep quiet about it and try and monetize your knowledge so other way?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Nov 2009 @ 3:22pm

    The US and possibly other govornments may not learn from this however, the voting machine manufacturer will, and seeing as there are very few players in the voting machine market this could be seen as a way to set this particular manufacturer apart from the rest. So it gains more market share becuase of its better security due to its holes being patched after the hacks, and because it gets more market share it will be used in more parts of the world and may end up in use in the US

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    rollinginsanity, 2 Nov 2009 @ 3:49pm

    All power to Brazil for it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    senshikaze (profile), 2 Nov 2009 @ 6:10pm

    Are these based on Windows CE? If so, I think that is an unfair advantage for the hackers.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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