Apple iPads are ‘more secure than voting systems’ – researcher

“Dutch security researcher Sijmen Ruwhof has examined the software used at Dutch polling stations to send election results, and now claims ‘the average iPad is more secure than the Dutch voting system,'” Jonny Evans writes for Computerworld. “You can take a look at the accumulation of security weaknesses identified by the researcher here.”

“Just last week Dutch Home Affairs Minister, Ronald Plasterk, ordered an investigation to explore the possibility of its forthcoming March elections being vulnerable to interference,” Evans reports. “News that the Dutch system is less secure than an iPad will likely fill no one with too much joy.”

“Every connecting computing device you use – from your mouse to your PC – should be at least as secure as an iPad,” Evans writes. “In my opinion it is shameful that any device or system you use is any less secure than that.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Ruwhof’s report is harrowing to anyone who believes in the inviolability of elections.

37 Comments

    1. We worked on a voting app (graphics portion) a few years back and discovered the same thing. The iPad encrypts traffic as do iPhones, and with a Touch ID sensor that is reset for each person/ a passcode it would be virtually impossible for the bite count to be intercepted and manipulated.

      The Diebold systems we tested were basically a form of freeDos underneath, with a graphical layer and resistive touch screen.. terribly inadequate for security. The tabulation computers are also running mostly windows xp which is insane. If each state would contract with apple for iPads/iOS devices for voting machines, it would be much more accurate and reliable. Also if we could have a voting app where each person could download it to their device, and authenticate with Touch ID, it would be impossible for election fraud or mistabulations to occur.

  1. It looks like Trump may be right, and the entire election should be invalidated and new elections called, after the voter rolls and voting machines are thoroughly investigated and fixed. Until then, they should annul the last election and re-instate the previous (the last legitimately elected) president.

    Many people are perplexed at Trump’s insistence that the election was flawed and there was voter fraud. For many, it is unclear what is his actual goal. Surely it can’t be that it is simply out of his own vanity (losing the popular vote by the highest margin in history)? If not, then he is suggesting that the election results were invalid. If millions of votes were cast illegally, how can ANYONE know for sure for whom did these illegal votes go? After all, virtually every poll out there, from highly scientific ones, to self-selected online polls, gave Clinton 5:1 to 10:1 chance of victory; her side didn’t need to cheat, if all polls were giving her the edge already. So, who is to say that these purported three million illegal votes didn’t all go to Trump, giving him the unexpected victory? That certainly sounds like a much more plausible scenario than three million illegal immigrants taking a risk of being caught by going to the polling station and trying to vote in an election where their purportedly preferred candidate was apparently winning by a wide margin?

    I really can’t understand exactly WHAT does Trump want to achieve by invalidating the result of the eleciton? Did he NOT win it?

    1. I think it may as simple as vanity honestly. If you e been around NYC or ever stayed at one of his hotels, it’s a lot self aggrandizement and over compensation. But, on the their hand, your scenario is plausible because the voting machines are very easily screwed with. The machines themselves could show zero signs of tampering, because a smart tech would just mess with the weighting of the count in tabulation software on the easily hackable windows xp. For example, if you wanted to tilt a state for trump you would weight the R votes at 1.05 and the D votes .98 which would account for the 7 point discrepancy between exit polls and tallies. And the other direction would be vice versa. It is a very plausible scenario which has happened in other countries.

      1. One simple thing that all voting machines need is a paper backup. Something you see before you drop it into a box. It’s about the only way to make sure a recount is correct.

        1. Yep. With no paper trail beyond the receipt, and since the receipt isn’t compared unless he electronic count differs by more than 1% from the registered voters? A recount isn’t the way to achieve full results. An audit on the other hand, where the code is examined and the paper receipts are compared is a better solution.

    2. You do know that Trump’s expert on Voter Fraud was registered to vote in 3 states, right?

      From the Associated Press:
      “The AP found that Phillips was registered in Alabama and Texas under the name Gregg Allen Phillips, with the identical Social Security number. Mississippi records list him under the name Gregg A. Phillips, and that record includes the final four digits of Phillips’ Social Security number, his correct date of birth and a prior address matching one once attached to Gregg Allen Phillips. He has lived in all three states.”

      http://bigstory.ap.org/article/80497cfb5f054c9b8c9e0f8f5ca30a62/ap-man-claiming-3m-improper-votes-registered-3-states#

      The problem is not vote fraud- it is voter suppression.

      1. You absolutely correct. In person voter fraud is nonsense, and possibly the stupidest crime you can commit. Election fraud (which is a different thing) however, and voter supression is very real, and on the local level happens very routinely. And yes, his “voter fraud” expert is an abject liar and registered in 3 states, as are several même vers of his own administration and family (2 states). But the manipulation of the count is something that can happen at the county level without anyone knowing except the person who wrote the code.

    3. There could be another sinister reason. There is a plan to discredit voteing results and use it as a way to undercut the system. Get people to believe they whole system is wrong and no one in Congress should be trusted. Then the President comes in to “save” us and gives him complete control. I know it’s conspiracy theory. However it’s not impossible, and similar things have been done in other places.

    4. Predrag, you get sillier every year.
      Close to the wackiest thing you have ever said, and THAT’S saying something.

      As usual, you have no historical basis for your remarks. The polls always….ALWAYS!!!…favor the Democrat up until the last few days before a Presidential election. It is their job to sway popular belief that the Right is not a viable choice and everyone is looking to the left for answers.

      Popular votes have no sway in a Republic. If it did, five states would choose the President every cycle. The entire argument about this is the fact that almost every time elections are stalled, more and more Democrat votes are FOUND (not re-counted) and they are usually from Democratic controlled areas that have no excuse for the missing votes other than they are fake.

      This entire obfuscation of Trump’s first 100 days is a bought and paid for disruption of our Republic that is far, far worse than any possible Russian hack of the idiots on the left who couldn’t use safe passwords or even more to the point the government email system.

      1. Pre election polls are different than exit polls. They are not the same thing. And if you look at the exit polls, there was a 5-14% difference in certain states when the margin of error on an exit poll is less than 1%. Hence the thought that something is screwy. Don’t conflate two separate types of numbers.

      2. Btw 4 states choose it every year regardless of the candidates. If it was a popular vote, the right leaning candidate would never win, but the electoral college boils it down to Ohio, Florida, and sometimes PA/MI/WI/VA, so your argument there is incorrect. All the electoral college does is give small states almost equal or greater power than large states, which gives them outsized influence. We have to reckon with this at some point, and the only way it’s going to get fixed is if a republican loses the election while winning the popular vote, because they’ll never shut up about it.

        1. Who said anything about exit polls and yes they are different because they have to be taken over a large swath of areas, not just in Democrat strongholds as usual.

          And no, those four states don’t decide, they decide in conjunction with the other states, so don’t conflate that with my analysis of how five states (more likely seven) can decide by themselves.

          geez, no wonder y’all have issues with reality.
          You can’t read.

          1. No, I can read just fine, your analysis is incorrect because you seem to not understand how the electoral system works.

            Let me explain this very simply: since there are reliable blue and red states in every cycle, the candidates only campaign in “swing states” which is 7-9 depending on the year, but it always comes down to the same basic 2-4 states which end up deciding the election. Therefore the rest of the country’s popular vote counts don’t even matter, theorhetically a candidate could win the popular vote by 3-1 and still lose if they lost the swing states by 1 vote each… in a pure popular system it would force the candidates to speak to the entire nation instead to just a few swing states, and the overall count would require Republicans for example to spend more time in the northeast and west coast, and democrats to spend more time in the middle of the country… and whoever gets the most votes would win… the issue at hand is that nationally a right leaning candidate has won the popular vote once since 1988 (bush 2004) while winning three elections. That is a structural issuetnay has to be dealt with. The left leaning candidate has won the popular vote in 1992, 1996, 2000, 2008, 2012, and 2016. I don’t care what your political leanings are, but he person who gets the most votes should win. It seems simple to me, and rooted in civics, since all of our other offices are elected by popular vote.

            1. Last Republican president that entered the White House with a popular vote majority was G.H.W Bush, and that was 28 years ago (in the 80s, while there sill was Soviet Union)… Most readers of this forum weren’t even born yet.

            2. Meaningless. Do you play baseball to try get the most hits, instead of the most runs, too, Dem dum-dum?

              The rules say to win the game, you get the most electoral votes. And the campaigns are all therefore geared to do just that, not to amass meaningless popular votes.

              Trying to claim the game is won a different way after it has concluded is something a three-year-old does – once. Then they wise up. You should, too.

            3. Yeah and you complained for 8 years about the black guy, so we are allowed to analyse the issue with the system. If popular votes are so meaningless, why is you guy so obsessed with it?

            4. That’s what I’m starting to gather. Bush did get more votes in 04 but it was hardly a mandate with an electoral win of 286-251, in 2000 he lost both ways before the Supreme Court stepped in to stop the Florida recount. GHWB was the last to have a true decisive win.

      3. None of the things you say relate to what I wrote.

        Yes, you could argue that pre-election polls always, ALWAYS favour the Democrat, but I never suggested otherwise, nor did I dispute what you said. All I said was that for this particular election, that spread was significantly wider than before, and as a result, quite many Democrats were already celebrating weeks before, and even Trump himself was lamenting the likelihood of a loss and preparing the terrain for challenging the result. This wasn’t fifty years ago; it was barely three months ago, I’m sure you remember.

        I’m not sure what has popular vote to do with what I wrote about. I hadn’t disputed the outcome of the election; Trump won it.

        What I am asking is, WHY is Trump disputing the outcome of the election he had won? Especially since popular vote has no sway in a REpublic (as you keep reminding everyone)?

        Does he really want to invalidate the outcome of this election? Or is he just so vain that he must figure out a way to explain away the loss of popular vote, even though it has absolutely no consequence on his presidency?

  2. I will get away from politics on this one. It does show how secure the iPad is. That should be a great selling point. Small businesses need that kind of protection. It is a great reason not to use Android or Windows.

  3. Exactly! The real news here for Apple users is that iPads are so secure that a voting system expert uses them as the standard against which to measure voting integrity.

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