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Electronic voting machines easily hacked, claims US scientist

was shown apparently how easy it is to change the result without leaving a trace

As the Electronic Voting Machines are being questioned in India, it emerged that in a Boston technology conference last month, computer scientist Alex Halderman showed how easy it was to hack into an electronic voting machine utilized in USA.

It was shown apparently how easy it is to change the result without leaving a trace.

Halderman staged a mock election in which three conference attendees voted for George Washington, but an infected memory card switched the result to give a 2-1 victory to Benedict Arnold, the military officer who sold secrets during the Revolutionary War.

Halderman’s demonstration was on a voting machine still in use in 20 US states.

These states had no paper ballots that could be compared to the electronic output.

The vote comes two years after the US national election in which, according to intelligence officials, Russian agents probed voter registration networks in at least 20 states and accessed at least one.

Other researchers have shown flaws which could allow hackers to penetrate voting machines or networks, and have stepped up calls for new methods to replace all-electronic systems with no paper backup, still in use for an estimated 20 to 25 percent of US voters.

US elections are managed by state and local officials, meaning standards may not be uniform, and some states have resisted efforts to impose norms, claiming this would impinge on their authority.

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