John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Premier Continues Proud Tradition of Diebold E-Voting Screw-Ups

Diebold Elections Systems is changing its name to Premier Election Solutions. The change to Premier signifies a new beginning for the company.”

Diebold Press Release, Aug. 16, 2007

So the hundreds of votes that were dropped in Ohio’s March primary elections? The ones that Premier Election Solutions, formerly called Diebold Election Systems (DBD), insisted were caused by faulty antivirus software and not a critical source code error?

They were caused by a source code error–one that’s been present in the company’s software for the past decade. Said Premier (Diebold) President Dave Byrd, “We are indeed distressed that our previous analysis of this issue was in error.”

Yeah, I bet you are. But not nearly as distressed as the voters who will use the company’s machines in upcoming elections. Remember, Premier (Diebold) is the company that designed its widely criticized electronic voting systems in such a way that the the locks protecting them from tampering can be picked open with a hotel minibar key. The company posted a detailed photograph of its authorized key, showing size, shape, and cut pattern, on its online store. It’s the company whose e-voting machines once relied on hard-coded security passwords like “1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8” and “11111.” It’s the company that evaded election transparency laws in North Carolina. It’s the company that can’t seem to safeguard its source code. And it’s the company that modified its machines without notifying election officials. Twice.

So much for that “new beginning.” Once a Diebold, always a Diebold, eh?

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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus