A state government group is renewing its call for Tennessee to keep a paper trail of voters’ ballots roughly 10 years after coming out with a similar recommendation that resulted in little change.
Just 14 of the state’s 95 counties produce some sort of a paper record for independent recounts and audits, according to the Tennessee Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations. The group first urged changes to the state’s election system in 2007, when it found only two counties had such requirements. All the other counties use direct recording electronic voting machines with touch screens that do not produce a paper record that can be recounted and audited independent of the voting machine’s software. “Although ensuring that elections are safe and secure is not a new challenge, as technology and election systems have evolved, so has the risk to security,” the report reads. “The 2016 election cycle brought the potential vulnerabilities of electronic election infrastructure to the attention of national, state, and local officials, the media, and the general public.” Tennessee is one of 14 states with no statutory requirement of a paper record of all votes.
The report singled out a May 1 election incident where investigators found evidence of a “malicious intrusion” against the Knox County election commission’s website from a computer in Ukraine during a concerted cyberattack.
An analysis of the so-called “denial of service” cyberattack found that computers from 65 countries accessed the websites in a three-hour period. The intention of the attack has still not been determined.
“The weakness in the system was repaired, but the lingering concern is that the website crash and delay in election results create the image that elections are being hacked and are not secure, potentially eroding people’s confidence and trust in the election system and democratic process,” the report noted.
Full Article: Report: Voting paper trail still needed in Tennessee | FOX13.