Re: TED SELKER: US Election Assistance Commissio n--Questions

From: David Mertz <voting-project_at_gnosis_dot_cx>
Date: Tue May 11 2004 - 11:02:30 CDT

On May 11, 2004, at 11:05 AM, Popkin, Laird (WMG Corp) wrote:
> Right, but to play devil's advocate, (1) you'd lock the tapes in a
> secure location (or locked box, etc.), the same as the paper, and (2)
> if the tape is recorded over, there's physical evidence that it was
> manipulated (it's apparently possible to deetct changes in signal
> levels, etc.), while inserting a few extra ballots into a stack
> doesn't leave the same kind of evidence.

Inserting a few extra ballots leaves a FAR more clear and provable
trail if cryptographic signatures are included as part of ballots.

It's true that tapes stored securely won't be tampered with. But if
that storage security fails, you're out of luck. And there are
procedural things that need to happen, and actions that are required of
the tapes, before they make it to storage.

While guys with oscilloscopes and directed RF emitters (or whatever
forensics folks actually use) can detect lots of tampering with tapes,
such detection is out of reach of ordinary poll workers. It's not hard
to fool a pair of headphones plugged into a boom-box. Nor, presumably,
is it all that hard to fool a local voice-recognition software app that
already has to deal with variations in tape quality.

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Received on Mon May 31 23:17:34 2004

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