Rohit Mishra

Thoughts which don’t fit in 140 characters.

Indian Govt. Arrests Researcher Studying Security of Electronic Voting Machines

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I have been circumspect of the claims that Electronic Voting Machines in India can be tampered. There is a general trend of not trusting electronic methods. At the same time, it is not wise to trust technology before testing it properly. I came across this post on the Freedom to Tinker blog hosted by Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy,

A group of 3 researchers had studied the Electronic Voting Machines used in Indian elections for security flaws. They found out that the machines can be easily tampered within minutes. Their findings will soon appear in ACM Computer and Communications Security conference in October.  After seeing the methods demonstrated by their team, I am convinced that we need a detailed technical study to understand the security of these machines.

Unfortunately, the Govt. and the Election Commission are not looking at the issue in a constructive manner. Yesterday, Hari Prasad, the Indian in the group of 3 researchers was arrested by police which wants information on who provided the EVM to the researchers. Instead of working along with the technical opportunity to identify and resolve problems in EVMs, the Govt. and Election Commission are trying to shoot the messenger.

I hope Hari is released soon and the research that this team has done will help the Election Commission to improve these machines.

Please raise your voice, share this information on Twitter and Facebook and build public support for Hari Prasad.

The video on Hari’s arrest:

Credit:  twitter/newsycombinator