According to NBC News reporting, election security experts were able to use a “Google for servers” application that allowed them to access thirty U.S. voting systems. This finding invalidates oft-repeated claims that U.S. voting systems were NOT connected to the internet and thus not vulnerable to tampering and fraud. The report also notes that if hackers gain access to these election systems they can also place code that can affect future elections.
…according to a team of 10 independent cybersecurity experts who specialize in voting systems and elections. While the voting machines themselves are not designed to be online, the larger voting systems in many states end up there, putting the voting process at risk.NBC News
“We found over 35 [voting systems] had been left online and we’re still continuing to find more,” Kevin Skoglund, a senior technical advisor at the election security advocacy group National Election Defense Coalition, told NBC News.
The three largest voting manufacturing companies — Election Systems &Software, Dominion Voting Systems and Hart InterCivic — have acknowledged they all put modems in some of their tabulators and scanners. The reason? So that unofficial election results can more quickly be relayed to the public. Those modems connect to cell phone networks, which, in turn, are connected to the internet.NBC News
NBC News also reported that the security experts believed they were only capturing a portion of U.S. voting systems that may have been or still are accessible online. Further, the experts reported to NBC that at least three of the elections systems they reported to election officials still remained online.
For election systems to be online, even momentarily, presents a serious problem, according to Appel.
“Once a hacker starts talking to the voting machine through the modem, the hacker cannot just change these unofficial election results, they can hack the software in the voting machine and make it cheat in future elections,” he said.NBC News
Full report here.