[NetBehaviour] How to steal an election by hacking the vote.

marc marc.garrett at furtherfield.org
Fri Oct 27 12:33:54 CEST 2006

How to steal an election by hacking the vote.

By Jon "Hannibal" Stokes.

One bad apple...

What if I told you that it would take only one person—one highly 
motivated, but only moderately skilled bad apple, with either authorized 
or unauthorized access to the right company's internal computer 
network—to steal a statewide election? You might think I was crazy, or 
alarmist, or just talking about something that's only a remote, highly 
theoretical possibility. You also probably would think I was being 
really over-the-top if I told you that, without sweeping and very costly 
changes to the American electoral process, this scenario is almost 
certain to play out at some point in the future in some county or state 
in America, and that after it happens not only will we not have a clue 
as to what has taken place, but if we do get suspicious there will be no 
way to prove anything. You certainly wouldn't want to believe me, and I 
don't blame you.

So what if I told you that one highly motivated and moderately skilled 
bad apple could cause hundreds of millions of dollars in damage to 
America's private sector by unleashing a Windows virus from the safety 
of his parents' basement, and that many of the victims in the attack 
would never know that they'd been compromised? Before the rise of the 
Internet, this scenario also might've been considered alarmist folly by 
most, but now we know that it's all too real.


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