[nSLUG] Evoting Rant

Jack Warkentin jwark at bellaliant.net
Wed Oct 17 18:36:20 ADT 2012

Hi Everybody

Well, again, FWIW, I am absolutely against evoting, for several reasons.

1. There is no possible audit trail. Paper-based systems contain many 
checks and balances.

2. There is no possibility of any kind of recount. With paper-based 
systems, every single ballot can be reassessed.

3. There is no secure way of distributing the necessary usernames and 
passwords to voters. Snail mail is too easily compromised.

Rory wrote:
> FWIW: I'm not against evoting at all; conceptually it's a great idea
> with potentially major benefits.
> However, I think doing it wrong is worse than not having it at all.
> Especially if the 'wrongness' of the implementation opens up new
> potential for fraud and other irregularities. We have a hard enough time
> compensating for the older and well known types of fraud and error.
> On 2012-10-17, at 8:52 AM, Doooh Head wrote:
>> When it comes to "evoting" I have never been so astounded at the
>> ignorance's that abound at that simple term.
>> People get all wierded out at what they think it represents but don't
>> consider how broken our "paper" voting system really is and what
>> evoting actually delivers

I do not believe our "paper" voting system is broken at all. I have 
acted as a scrutineer at a couple of federal and provincial elections 
and can state that the opportunities for fraudulent voting are 
vanishingly small.

>> J
>> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> Date: Wed, 17 Oct 2012 08:30:33 -0300
>> From:dennis.dentremont at gmail.com <mailto:dennis.dentremont at gmail.com>
>> To:nslug at nslug.ns.ca <mailto:nslug at nslug.ns.ca>
>> Subject: Re: [nSLUG] Evoting Rant
>> I used to work for the same folks who run Intellivote. If anyone
>> remembers knowledge house then you should know that it's some of the
>> same folks...
>> On Wed, Oct 17, 2012 at 8:10 AM, Rory<rory at unixism.org
>> <mailto:rory at unixism.org>>wrote:
>>     I wish this was surprising.
>>     Given the pool of web application devs outs there, though, it
>>     doesn't surprise me at all. I continually run into sites that cost
>>     considerable money to build (devs, consultants, etc) and are full
>>     of all the classic newbie security holes. Or that use 'encryption'
>>     to virtually zero effect.
>>     You'd think more of us had learned a thing or two about secure
>>     development over the last decade or so.
>>     Add to that all the complexities inherent in elections and voting,
>>     you've got a recipe for disaster.
>>     R
>>     On 2012-10-17, at 12:08 AM, Daniel AJ Sokolov wrote:
>>     > Let me set this straight: I think that Evoting is a bad idea for
>>     any public election. There is but a single group that I would see
>>     it warranted for: voters with certain handicaps.
>>     >
>>     > Putting aside my general approach to Evoting, I have observed
>>     what is going on in the HRM. And it is appalling.
>>     >
>>     > They have sent Login AND Password, in plain visibility, on ONE
>>     and the same page in an easily identifiable envelope - and they
>>     even put a "do not forward" message on it so voters who are out of
>>     town can not evote after all.
>>     >
>>     > They did not set up DNSSec.
>>     >
>>     > They force you to use JavaScript.
>>     >
>>     > The website officially supports only certain operating systems
>>     and browsers (no word of Linux) and apparently a single screenreader.
>>     >
>>     > No source code has been disclosed (however, a single HRM employee
>>     was tasked with verifying that the source code is perfect - what a
>>     relief).
>>     >
>>     > They are unable to verify fingerprints of the SSL certificates in
>>     use. They were very nice, talked to the Returning Officer and
>>     called me back: "You just need to type in https and then it is
>>     secure."
>>     >
>>     > Sure.
>>     > Daniel AJ
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Jack Warkentin, phone 902-404-0457, email jwark at bellaliant.net
39 Inverness Avenue, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, B3P 1X6

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