Report shows potential vulnerabilities in Georgia voting machines

by Summer Lane

Photo: Adobe Stock

A new report from University of Michigan professor J. Alex Halderman has drawn attention to the potential vulnerabilities of Georgia voting machines as the 2024 presidential election looms on the horizon.

The report, which provides an analysis of “Georgia’s ImageCast X Ballot Marking Devices,” has made waves for information related to 2020 machines that replaced “insecure, decades-old DRE voting machines.”

Halderman stated in the report that he played the role of “an attacker and attempted to discover ways to compromise the system and change votes” in his analysis of the ImageCastX BMD equipment that is used in Peach State elections.

Via his report, he makes a case for the following:

“I show that the ICX suffers from critical vulnerabilities that can be exploited to subvert all of its security mechanisms, including: user authentication, data integrity protection, access control, privilege separation, audit logs, protective counters, hash validation, and external firmware validation.

I demonstrate that these vulnerabilities provide multiple routes by which attackers can install malicious software on Georgia’s BMDs, either with temporary physical access or remotely from election management systems (EMSs). I explain how such malware can alter voters’ votes while subverting all of the procedural protections practiced by the State, including acceptance testing, hash validation, logic and accuracy testing, external firmware, validation, and risk-limiting audits (RLAs).”

A surprising report from NBC revealed that Halderman’s analysis was being used by plaintiffs in a federal court lawsuit that is attempting to halt the use of these machines in Georgia’s elections.

Per their report, Halderman’s report is one of two that were produced in the inquiry into these machines. The second report was paid for by the company that manufactured the ballot-marking devices, but federal authorities have reportedly found the same alleged vulnerabilities that Halderman’s report did.

Conservative commentator Emerald Robinson and host of “The Absolute Truth with Emerald Robinson” stated on Twitter, “Yes, a report was just unsealed that shows your vote can be altered with the voting machines. Yes, they’re going to use these machines again in 2024.”

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