Re: Security markings on the ballot

From: Douglas W. Jones <jones_at_cs_dot_uiowa_dot_edu>
Date: Wed Oct 22 2003 - 16:50:22 CDT

On Wednesday, October 22, 2003, at 02:22 PM, Alan Dechert wrote:

> Part of the scheme I have envisioned to prevent counterfeit ballots
> involves
> using images as watermarks. These images could be varied so that
> ballots
> produced on a particular PC on Election Day could be easy to distinguish
> visually from other ballots, and there would be no way for a prospective
> forger to know how they would appear on the ballot.

Very nice idea. For example, use the millisecond field of the time
of day clock at the time the precinct configuration file was created
to determine the random placement of the images. That way, even if
someone can completely recreate the precinct configuration file, they'll
have a really hard time recreating the position of the images by any
means but actual inspection of the actual ballots from that precinct,
something that should be hard to do because of physical ballot security.

> I put the American flag centered near the top so that the heading
> ("OFFICIAL BALLOT, GENERAL ELECTION" etc) is over the background
> image of the flag. I put a Wright Bros picture around the middle
> and lower half of the page. I like the way this looks.

I'd strongly recommend inclusion of a state flag or state seal
and a US flag or US seal as the typical minimum set of 'franks' on
the ballot.

                                Doug Jones

(Take a look at the background printing on a US passport for an example
of a somewhat overdone scheme using lots of state emblems.)
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Received on Fri Oct 31 23:17:03 2003

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