USA: Virginia ditches DRE voting machines after ITU researcher’s hack
In July 2017 associate professor at the IT University of Copenhagen, Carsten Schürmann made the headlines in the international media with a hack that demonstrated the vulnerabilities of the DRE voting machines used in the U.S. elections. Now these voting machines are decertified in the state of Virginia.
The Department of Elections in Virginia called for the immediate decertification of Direct Record Electronic (DRE) voting equipment, according to a press release issued Friday September the 8th.
The State Board of Elections approved the request in an effort to increase the security and integrity of Virginia’s voting systems before the November election. The decision is effective immediately and requires that DREs (voting machines that don’t produce paper trails) may no longer be used for elections in Virginia.
In the official recommendation, The Department of Elections refers to hacks conducted at the DefCon conference (Las Vegas, July 2017) by a group of hackers, among them associate professor at the IT University of Copenhagen Carsten Schürmann.
The recommendation reads as follows:
“This recommendation is being made for multiple reasons, including the current security environment surrounding election administration, recently released public reports with confidential information related to unauthorized access to DREs at DefCon’s “Voting Machine Hacking Village,” the fact that no DREs in use in Virginia have a voter-verifiable paper audit trail … “
In early August the news about Carsten Schürmann’s hack made the headlines in a large number of international media and an op-ed with recommendations to the U.S. election officials written by Carsten Schürmann himself was published in Wired.
In September, less than two months after his hack, the US media are celebrating the goodbye to the DRE voting machines. Some of the media are referring to DefCon hacks as the trigger that has led to the law change: