The first two articles in the latest issue of Risks Digest are about the recent US election and the headlong rush to implement poorly tested, unauditable, opaque voting systems:
The general consensus among election officials and voters seems to be that the all-electronic machines are a great improvement, relatively easy to use, and inherently able to prevent overvotes. The general consensus among knowledgeable computer security experts seems to be that almost all of the existing all-electronic systems could relatively easily be rigged by internal fraud in the software and external manipulation of the local polling-place configurations and could also be subject to undetected internal errors, because of an almost complete absence of meaningful audit trails and independent verification of the consistency of votes tabulated with votes cast. Just because an all-electronic machine looks like it might be working, how do you *KNOW* it is doing the right thing? From a RISKS perspective, a perceived potential lack of integrity is a serious obstacle to democracy.
—Peter G. Neumann
On the bright side, I seem to be starting to have more to talk about with my conspiracy theorist brother-in-law (and fewer disagreements).