EAC Unit Recommends E-Voting Software Independence

By Wayne Rash  |  Posted 12-06-2006 Print


EUC with HCI: Why It Matters

A committee has voted that election results should be determined independently of whether or not voting machines have had software problems or security breaches.

WASHINGTON—The Technical Guidelines Development Committee, a committee appointed by the Election Assistance Commission to study security issues involving electronic voting, voted on Dec. 5 to recommend a move to software independence in voting machines used in the United States.

Software independence means that election results can be determined independently of whether voting machines have software problems or had their security penetrated.

An example of such software independence would be with machines that use voter verifiable paper audit trails.

Click here to read about the risks of e-voting.

The committee vote recommended that NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) develop standards for such software independent machines. However, the committee stopped short of recommending that existing machines that are certified under the EAC's best practices be decertified.

A report by the committee said that the current security threats are not sufficiently serious to require jurisdictions remove such machines from use. Instead, the resolution passed by the committee recommends that such standards be developed for future requirements of the EAC.

"I think it's a very significant step by the TGDC," said Ray Martinez, a policy advisor to the Pew Center on the States, and a former member of the EAC.

Read the full story on eWeek: EAC Unit Recommends E-Voting Software Independence


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