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Comments about ‘In our opinion: Utah is correct to both be at the front of online voting, and cautiously study security’

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Published: Monday, Aug. 4 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT

Updated: Monday, Aug. 4 2014 12:06 p.m. MDT

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JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

There will always be some "fraud" in voting. The question is "How much is acceptable"?

The answer SHOULD BE "an insignificant amount".
Which is pretty much what we have had for years and years. (yes, you can find exceptions)

We cannot forgo internet voting because it wont be 100% secure.
And we should not change election laws in an effort to stop more valid votes than fraudulent ones.

Politicians should not be in charge of election laws (or district lines). They cannot be trusted to put the good of the people ahead of themselves or their party. They show us that daily.

FreedomFighter41
Provo, UT

So online voting is dangerous?

Yet machines manufactured by a conservative lobbyist and spread throughout the east that still make you vote George W Bush even though you select John Kerry is fine?

John Charity Spring
Back Home in Davis County, UT

This liberal voting plan is the worst possible scenario. Giving unsecured access to masses of uneducated and uninformed voters is a recipe for disaster. We must abolish the 17th Amendment, and then follow with similar measures on the State level, with utmost security. That is the real answer here.

JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

"This liberal voting plan"

This plan came from the Reddest of the Red states. Maybe, just maybe, you are completely out of touch with the times.

Kevin J. Kirkham
Salt Lake City, UT

Unions, under the threat of violence, forced workers to turn their ballots over to the union bosses who would then turn them in to certify the union. The courts dumped that idea. I see this as a risk with both online and mail-in ballots. Mail-in ballots should be eliminated except for the homebound and in such cases, 2 people from the elections office should be sent out to the homebound to give them their ballot and help them, if needed, in filling it out. This would prevent caregivers from filling out the home bound person's ballot themselves and sending it in.

If we are to have online voting, the government should require the voter to answer a number of security questions to prevent people from selling their voting access codes to the highest bidder or to prevent pressure groups from demanding the codes from their members (unions, churches, corporations, etc...)

The online activisit group Anonymous has been able to hack into government computers. They or other groups (other governments?) are likely to do the same. Online voting is way too risky. The integrity of the vote is too important.

Elwood P. Suggins
BEAVERTON, OR

I grew up and lived in Utah until my late 20s. Now, almost 30 years later, I live in Oregon where there is mail-in voting. I caution you: do not switch to mail-in or online voting.

I know that mail-in voting is ripe with multiple and easy opportunities for fraud. I think it is terrible. Online voting would probably be even worse. Don't do it. If someone doesn't have the energy to go to the polls or get an absentee ballot before hand, he or she doesn't deserve to vote.

There You Go Again
Saint George, UT

"...This liberal voting plan is the worst possible scenario. Giving unsecured access to masses of uneducated and uninformed voters is a recipe for disaster. We must abolish the 17th Amendment, and then follow with similar measures on the State level, with utmost security. That is the real answer here...".

Reminiscent of the meme Hitler used to gain control of Germany.

John Charity Spring
Back Home in Davis County, UT

The Nazis came to power through a combination of mass voting by uninformed voters together with voter fraud. Why on earth would anyone want that senario here?

The Skeptical Chymist
SALT LAKE CITY, UT

@John Charity Smith

It seems to me that the set of people you classify as the "uneducated and uninformed voters" is identical with the set of people who vote differently than you.

Your ideas to restrict the right to vote, and to eliminate the direct election of Senators are undemocratic in the extreme. What's next, going back to the days when the right to vote was restricted to white, property-owning males?

MaxPower
Eagle Mountain, UT

It's hard to preach security when you can already absentee and mail in your ballot.

No ID, no verification. My 7 year old could have voted and mailed in the ballot.

The only time I need ID is when I decide to go to the polls.

Inconsitency at it's worst.
========================
@FreedomFighter41

Yet machines manufactured by a conservative lobbyist and spread throughout the east that still make you vote George W Bush even though you select John Kerry is fine?
===============================

Dick Cheney knew who you meant to vote for and was correcting your mistake ;) Besides as he predicted, if we elected a democrat, we would have faced serious threats to our well being as a nation.

Good thing we got four more years of them.

Fitz
Murray, UT

With the number of hackings of financial info from retail entities, financial entities, and even the Utah's Department of Health, how can anyone trust an online voting system. Mail ends have their merit, but as 'Elwood P. Suggins' comment above, it has its flaws. The concept of requiring government picture ID, which has been sanctioned by SCOTUS, helps to reduce fraud, but, unfortunately, fraud in voting has been, and will continue, to have errors, errors big enough to change the results of an election. But from my point of view, going to the poll, and showing you government ID is still the best option we have. I vote early, which is part of the voting system works. After, early voting gives you lots of time to vote, it doesn't all have to happen on one day.

1aggie
SALT LAKE CITY, UT

We can't even trust the computer vote tabulators which resulted in the 2004 Ohio election being stolen, according to avowed Republican and cybersecurity expert, Stephen Spoonamore. Spoonamore believes every election should rely on paper ballots.
Faith in our democracy is low, computer voting will further erode it and increase the opportunity for fraud.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I thought it was "Racist" to expect anybody to identify themselves before voting...

With no reliable way to identify who is voting... unidentified electronic voting will be RIFE with fraud.

You will have basic fraud (someone voting for someone they know they aren't). And more innocent fraud, (someone voting for someone in their family or their neighborhood who trusts them to vote for them because they don't even know who is running and what the issues are).

And changing large blocks of votes electronically is easier. Electronically it's as easy to change a million votes (in a nano-second) as it is to change one old fashioned vote.

Fraud happens, there's no doubt of that. It absolutely happens in EVERY election (people running elections know that). Making voting anonymous and electronic... just makes fraud easier and enables people who would do it, to do it with less risk and on much larger scale than before.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

UPDATE voter_table
SET president="Barack Obama",
WHERE state="Utah";

>Run

15 seconds to write, less than a second to run, 2 million votes changed in less than a second. No way to know what the voter's actual intent was (no chads etc) unless we have a backup to compare it to, but knowing Government IT systems... they don't have one. Just like they don't have a backup of the Congressional emails subpoenaed to investigate the IRS scandal recently.

Any country, any overzealous party partisan, any malicious hacker, who can hack in could run this query in less than a second...

PeanutGallery
Salt Lake City, UT

Online voting is a really bad idea, and will be open to risk of serious voter fraud. Don't do it.

LOU Montana
Pueblo, CO

Take a moment and remember Bruce Funk, Country Clerk for Emery county. In December of 2005 Bruce questioned the validity of the Diebold voting machines and had them inspected by an independent company. The Diebold machines had a built in lock out system to keep them from being investigated. The machines were also found to be defective in voting (no matter how you voted the programed machine would register the preprogramed vote, George W. Bush). Diebold accused Bruce of violating the machines and the Utah election committee agreed.

In Utah, state laws were enacted effective June 1, 2006, making it a felony to
investigate a voting machine, its software, or the tabulation software and “other” as
deemed private.

Bruce was locked out of his office, of 23 years, and became an outcast in his community for doing the right thing.

LOU Montana
Pueblo, CO

@2 bits, I have to wonder if you was as concerned with GWBush won both of his very close elections?

cs85
Orem, UT

I am a computer scientist and I have grave concerns about any kind of computer balloting. I know only too well how computers can be manipulated. I favor a return to individual paper ballots, hand counted with multiple witnesses. Anything less does not assure the integrity of the vote. People are already cynical. Let's not give them more reasons to be.

OneWifeOnly
San Diego, CA

@2 bits
"
UPDATE voter_table
SET president="Barack Obama",
WHERE state="Utah";

>Run
"

Although your post has given me a good laugh today and I know there are many people who see computer programming as literally this simple, the truth is that if the DBA set the table to not allow record updates then the above programming would fail and the original votes could not be changed.

MaxPower
Eagle Mountain, UT

If online voting and voting machines are to be used, the software loaded into them ought to be Open Source and freely available to the public to inspect. This transparency is very much needed when our most sacred right in a democracy us exercised.

Each and every machine should be inspectable by any voter on election day. They need to be able to have confidence that those for whom they vote are actually being tallied correctly. If this cannot be done, then paper ballots should be used, and their counting be open to the public.

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