Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 3 Share on Twitter Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
General News   

Fourth of July Fireworks: Unredacted Hursti reports, photos released

By Bev Harris, Black Box Voting  Posted by Joan Brunwasser (about the submitter)       (Page 1 of 4 pages)   No comments
Follow Me on Twitter     Message Joan Brunwasser
Black Box Voting : Latest Consumer Reports from Black Box Voting: Fourth of July Fireworks: Unredacted Hursti reports, photos released

Posted by Bev Harris on Monday, July 03, 2006 - 02:36 pm:

States and local jurisdictions did not take sufficient action to
mitigate risks.

Black Box Voting has provided the following to for its
litigation. This will become a public record via the litigation filed
by Lowell Finley. Because public officials who have received the
unredacted reports have failed to take this risk seriously and arrange
for appropriate mitigations, and because Black Box Voting believes
this information is of critical public interest for pending litigation
and citizen actions, we are releasing it publicly now.

Here's an informal synopsis of the unmitigated risks in the Diebold

A huge risk to the integrity of elections is a contaminated
bootloader. Here's why: If you own the bootloader, you own the
machine. The source code for the TSx, along with the technical data
package, have been publicly released since 2003. Estimates are that it
would take approximately three months for a reasonably skilled
programmer to design a working malicious bootloader.

You cannot clean a maliciously designed bootloader with the
mitigations performed so far by state officials (replacing programs
via memory cards)

Here are some specific problems with the Diebold bootloader:

1) It appears not to have been examined by the Independent Testing
Authorities (ITAs). Therefore, we don't even know whether the original
bootloader contains malicious code.

2) There appears to be no authentication procedure when installing
"clean versions" to ensure that the code is the same as that which was
examined by the ITAs (and in this case, the ITAs didn't even examine

3) There is no forensic test that will reveal a malicious bootloader

4) Because of the design of the Diebold TSx machine, a malicious
bootloader can be installed at any time from factory installation to
the election itself. Once a bootloader is contaminated, it can control
the machine permanently.

A contaminated bootloader, especially in combination with other
security issues in the TSx, has the potential to allow remote access
on an election-by-election basis, at any time during the election
cycle and even years in advance of the election.

5) The Diebold TSx machine's motherboard contains a JTAG connection
which can be used to take control of the motherboard. Although you
cannot reliably clean a malicious bootloader by reinstalling it with a
memory card, you can install a pristine version using the JTAG cable.

However, there appears to be no pristine version of the bootloader,
since it has never been examined by the ITAs.

6) Unfortunately, the JTAG connector can be used to overwrite a
so-called authentic and proper bootloader with a malicious one. Thus,
even if a so-called pristine bootloader is installed via the JTAG
connector, the same connector can be used to replace that one with a
new one at any time.

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3  |  4

(Note: You can view every article as one long page if you sign up as an Advocate Member, or higher).

Rate It | View Ratings

Joan Brunwasser Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Joan Brunwasser is a co-founder of Citizens for Election Reform (CER) which since 2005 existed for the sole purpose of raising the public awareness of the critical need for election reform. Our goal: to restore fair, accurate, transparent, secure elections where votes are cast in private and counted in public. Because the problems with electronic (computerized) voting systems include a lack of (more...)

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Follow Me on Twitter     Writers Guidelines

Contact EditorContact Editor
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEd News Newsletter
   (Opens new browser window)

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Interview with Dr. Margaret Flowers, Arrested Tuesday at Senate Roundtable on Health Care

Renowned Stanford Psychologist Carol Dweck on "Mindset: The New Psychology of Success"

Howard Zinn on "The People Speak," the Supreme Court and Haiti

Snopes confirms danger of Straight Ticket Voting (STV)

Fed Up With Corporate Tax Dodgers? Check Out!

Literary Agent Shares Trade Secrets With New Writers

To View Comments or Join the Conversation:

Tell A Friend