Re: OVC-discuss Digest, Vol 23, Issue 16

From: Joseph Lorenzo Hall <joehall_at_gmail_dot_com>
Date: Fri Sep 22 2006 - 17:04:04 CDT

The report was released months ago... it is being passed around again
to raise awareness of its contents. -Joe

On 9/22/06, Jerry Lobdill <> wrote:
> >Message: 1
> >
> >From: "Barbara Simons"
> >To: "Quixote Group"
> >Sent: Thursday, September 21, 2006 5:48 PM
> >Subject: the USACM study of Voter Registration Databases
> >
> >
> >Dear colleagues,
> >
> >This email is in response to my request for help in publicizing the ACM
> >study of computerized databases of registered voters.
> >
> >You can find the Executive Summary, list of panelists, and full report
> >(a downloadable pdf file) at The report
> >is aimed at the general public and at election officials. However, for
> >those folks who don't want to read the full report, we have a separate
> >file called Overview and Recommendations that can be downloaded. It
> >contains our 99 recommendations.
> >
> >I blush to admit that we didn't think of some of the problems that have
> >occurred. For example, while we discuss well known problems with
> >inaccuracies in registrar of voters databases and recommend against
> >using database matches to purge voters, it never occurred to us that
> >someone would do something so foolish as to disenfranchise voters whose
> >names are not an exact match with the names in some other databases.
> >
> >When we discussed the need for backups to the electronic poll
> >books, the problem of having the poll books crash in the middle of an
> >election with the accompanying difficulty of determining who had
> >already voted did not occur to us.
> I am amazed that this study did not consider the possibility that
> these VDBs might be used to assist in denying the vote to legitimate
> voters as was widely done by the Republicans in 2004 albeit using
> lists obtained in the old fashioned way. Also I wonder why the delay
> in announcing this report?
> I cringe at the thought of what might be done with these databases.
> Suppose this DB was used on line on election day to compare a voter's
> poll data (previously done by hand in a book and checked by the poll
> workers to determine the identity of the would be voter. Suppose the
> Trojan Horse was programmed to delete the ballots of 10% of
> Democratic voters, producing a record indicating that the voter
> didn't show up to vote or was deemed ineligible to vote for some
> trumped up reason. Suppose the voter was not informed that her vote
> was being denied.
> Is this possible????
> _______________________________________________
> OVC-discuss mailing list

Joseph Lorenzo Hall
PhD Student, UC Berkeley, School of Information
OVC-discuss mailing list
= The content of this message, with the exception of any external 
= quotations under fair use, are released to the Public Domain    
Received on Sat Sep 30 23:17:05 2006

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Sat Sep 30 2006 - 23:17:08 CDT