Thank You, Debra Bowen!

Bowen and HAL

Remember, you heard it here last!

You can get much better coverage of this issue at the Brad Blog.

California Secretary of State Debra Bowen has commissioned a ‘Top-to-bottom’ review of voting machines used in California. The reports are in and as a result of them are abysmal. As a consequence Bowen has decertified the machines and recertified some of them for very limited use.

In a dramatic late-night press conference, California Secretary of State Debra Bowen decertified, and then recertified with conditions, all but one voting system used in the state.
Her decisions, following her unprecedented, independent “Top-to-Bottom Review” of all certified electronic voting systems, came just under the wire to meet state requirements for changes in voting system certification.

Bowen announced that she will be disallowing the use of Direct Recording Electronic (DRE, usually touch-screen) voting systems made by the Diebold and Sequoia companies on Election Day, but for one DRE machine per polling place which may be used for disabled voters. The paper trails from votes cast on DREs manufactured by those two companies must be 100% manually counted after Election Day.

Many are expecting lawsuits to follow soon so this story is not over.

The top to bottom review consisted of at least 3 parts. All of the machines reviewed had significant flaws with respect to each report:

  • A ‘red team’ report of hack attempts
  • An accessibility report
  • A source code review

In short, each machine is hackable and not very accessible.

Some more resources:

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6 responses to “Thank You, Debra Bowen!

  1. Things like this make it easier to put up with the socialism in San Francisco. :)

  2. Very progressive of her. What made her do it in the first place? a new voting machine scheme?

  3. >What made her do it in the first place?
    Bowen was elected in part becuase she promised to improve scrutiny into the election process. There have been a lot of people (especially computer scientists) question the wisdom of voting machines and especially questioning the credibility of the current crop of machines.

    Wikipedia on Bowen:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debra_Bowen

  4. Pingback: More on electronic voting machines « All About Voting

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