Security flaws mar mobile voting app, researchers say

CNET | 2/13/2020 | Staff
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Back to paper?

The Voatz mobile phone voting app has significant vulnerabilities, according to a paper released Thursday by MIT computer science researchers. The flaws in the app's design could let sophisticated hackers learn voters' identities or IP addresses, access votes and, in some cases, change them, the researchers found.

App - Voters - Voting - App - Market

The app, used primarily by military and overseas voters, is the only voting app on the market, according to The New York Times, which reported the research earlier Thursday. The weaknesses addressed in the MIT paper were in the app that's installed on voters' phones.

"Exploitation would be well within the capacity of a nation-state actor," the researchers, Michael A. Specter, James Koppel and Daniel Weitzner, wrote in their paper. Voatz disputes the findings.

Research - Calls - Election - Security - Experts

The research comes amid calls from election security experts to use paper ballots in all elections. The Voatz app has been used to help overseas and military voters cast their ballots in the state of West Virginia, as well as localities like Denver, Colorado, and Utah County, Utah. In previous elections, overseas voters have had to waive their right to a secret ballot, and then print out a paper version of their ballot, scan it, and email it back to elections officials.

In a lengthy response, Voatz said the researchers' information was incomplete. They used an older version of the...
(Excerpt) Read more at: CNET
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