The Voting News Weekly: The Voting News Weekly for April 30 – May 6 2018

CSO posted an extensive investigation that asked the question “Online voting is impossible to secure. So why are some governments using it?” The article features University of Melbourne researcher and Verified Voting Advisory Board member Vanessa Teague.

AdAge reported that at CampaignTech East, a two-day conference in Washington, D.C., the consensus among technology professional was that “tech-enabled shenanigans—whether masterminded by Vladimir Putin and friends or other bad hombres—are only going to further infect the U.S. political system.”

In a Salon oped, Aaron Sankin asked why so many states continue to send sensitive voter data through Crosscheck, a system with serious cybersecurity vulnerabilities that has the potential of opening up millions of American citizens to identity theft.

By a 6-1 vote, the Arkansas’ Supreme Court put on hold a lower court decision that had blocked implementation of the state’s voter identification law and declared the measure unconstitutional.

The Coalition for Good Governance is asking a district court for a preliminary injunction to stop Secretary of State Brian Kemp from using Georgia’s current Diebold AccuVote TSX voting system in the November elections. The complaint asserted that there is an “incompatibility between the functioning of the current electronic voting system and the voters’ right to cast a secret ballot and have that vote accurately counted.”

A New York appeals court has ruled that scanned images of election ballots are subject to the state’s Freedom of Information Law. In making the ruling, the court analyzed the impact of the state’s optical scan voting system and determined that the images generated by the scanners contain no information that would reveal the voter’s identity.

In an oped in the Philadelphia Inquirer, David Hickton & Paul McNulty call on members of the Blue Ribbon Commission on Pennsylvania’s Election Security “to make an honest assessment of Pennsylvania’s election security architecture, to diagnose and discuss its strengths and weaknesses, and to plan for a better, more secure future.”

Officials in Knox County Tennessee is dealing with the aftermath of a cyberattack, with the county’s mayor is calling for an investigation. As polls were closing for the colunty’s primary races for the mayoral election, the county’s website displaying the results crashed. The page was down for about an hour starting around 8 p.m. before officials were able to restore it.

Iraq plans to use a new electronic system in next month’s national elections that the election commission maintains will limit fraud and allow for the announcement of results within hours of polls closing. But officials in Kurdistan were quick to point out the new vulnerabilities posed by software based vote counting. “This technology can be used in the interest of one party or more. There is a possibility that some people would devote the votes from one party to another when they electronically send it to the main server in Baghdad because those who are on the server are not neutral or independent people. Thus, the result of the elections can be changed easily,” said the head of the Kurdistan Election Commission.

A trial of voter ID has seen people in England turned away from polling booths for the first time for not carrying the necessary documents, with other issues reported including abuse of voting staff and some confusion over what evidence needed to be shown.

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