Should we discontinue EVMs?

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Pranav
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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Pranav » 03 Jul 2011 08:52

x-posted from Lokpal thread:

RamaY wrote:
Pranav wrote:If a credible paper trail for EVMs is put in place before the next general election, then the nationalists have a chance.


This is in the works

http://articles.economictimes.indiatime ... ng-machine


There are two designs under consideration - one in which receipts get dropped in a box without manual intervention, and another design in which the voter manually takes the receipt, folds it, and drops it in a ballot box placed before the presiding officer.

Let us see what design is finally adopted. The former design is open to being hijacked by Trojans.

Also, the audit protocol is important. The EC does not announce tallies for each EVM separately. The data in the EVMs is electronically "mixed" and a final tally is announced. Thus, the mixing stage is also open to fraud. To conduct an audit for a constituency, the paper receipts from each and every EVM used in the constituency will have to be counted.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby sanjeevpunj » 03 Jul 2011 21:50

I have a suggestion but it is futuristic.DNA ID.Each individual has a specific DNA. It cannot be duplicated.So we create a DNA ID file of each individual using a blood sample, encrypt the DNA ID file and give it to him to keep safe and use when required. To read it, make it readable using special software. Now all one has to do to vote is go to the voting website, click once, attach DNA ID file, and get on with life. One vote is registered per DNA ID.
the daunting task s to do this for every individual, if this task is started on a war footing we could have things going smooth once completed. The permanent record of each individual's DNA ID file would be with the government, with copies of the data kept secure.The individual would be given the file in a readable ID card, which could be used for hundreds of other purposes.Currently there is the fingerprint based ID, and the biometric cornea based ID, but this DNA ID would be the final say.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Dileep » 24 Jul 2011 08:24

Today is the mock trial of the new EVMs with paper trail. It is being done at 36 booths of Vattiyoorkavu assembly constituency in Trivandrum district.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Muppalla » 26 Jul 2011 05:45

Voters thumbs up to VVPAT system for EVMs

In the wake of criticism over the past two years and unanimous demand by political parties for election reform, the ECI was under pressure to reform the voting system to restore the confidence of the public and the political class. But to the credit of the Election Commission under Chief Election Commissioner Dr. S.Y. Quraishi, it has not only initiated reform efforts in the form of Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) system but has done it enthusiastically.

Today, to test the viability of the newly developed Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) system, a filed trial was carried out in six districts including some remote and difficult terrain locations in different parts of the country. In each district, the filed trial was carried out in 36 polling stations and in each polling station, up to 1000 voters were mobilized to cast votes on the EVMs to test the ruggedness and accuracy of the operation of the printers in extreme locations.

The field trial, which I personally witnessed in East Delhi where it was tested in 36 polling stations of Vishwasnagar assembly constituency, was by and large successful. Scores of voters and political party representatives I have spoken to at different polling stations were quite satisfied with the new system which gave them a proof that their vote had been delivered correctly to the candidate for whom they voted.

Save a couple of exceptions out of these 36 polling stations where the printers malfunctioned – at one place due to faulty insertion of printer roll and at another due to operational problems – the printers worked perfectly and voters were almost unanimous that this system was definitely superior to the paperless EVMs as it afforded them a chance to verify their vote. It was the near unanimous view of most of the participants in the field trial. The final results of our independent research in Delhi and that the Election Commission has commissioned in all districts would vindicate this assessment.

As I visited many possible stations, I ran into two Election Commissioners V.S. Sampath and H.S. Brahma who visited different polling stations in East Delhi for a first hand experience of the field trial along with Alok Shukla, deputy election commissioner and A.K. Agarwala, professor of IIT, Delhi. All of them seemed visibly pleased to get positive feedback from the voters about the new system.

Personally for me and many of us who have been ardent critics of paperless EVMs, we have reason to be satisfied as we are in the process of making a quantum leap in election transparency and verifiability that are hallmarks of any genuine electoral democracy.

Even as I gloat over the progress, a word of caution is in order. The present VVPAT solution does not address many likely situations in real elections. For instance, what does a poll official do if there is a mismatch between the vote cast on the EVM and the printout that it delivers? What if some miscreants create trouble saying that there is a discrepancy even when none exists. These situations, which may occur in real elections, have no remedy in the present solution. We have some ideas and will engage with the ECI and civil society representatives to explore workable solutions. These challenges are not insurmountable but nevertheless need solutions that may even require some design changes.

Further, there are questions relating to auditing, recounting for which guidelines need to be evolved. Care is needed to implement the VVPAT regime such that it addresses the present concerns rather than throw up a newer set of problems, as many fear and some countries have experienced.


Poll officials worried
While everyone seemed happy with the new system, officials involved in the conduct of elections were visibly unhappy. Tension was writ large on their faces, more so in polling stations where open printers were tested where the printout emerging from the printer had to be collected by the voter and deposited in ballot boxes. One official was keeping a close watch on the printout (sometimes standing next to the voter inside the voting compartment) so that no one takes it away from the polling booth as these votes will be counted to match with the electronic result. In a real election, this would constitute a breach and no official can afford do this.

Officials manning polling stations with closed printers (where a printout becomes visible behind a screen and gets dropped after a few seconds) were relatively unruffled as they did not need to keep a check on the printouts.

One thing that is troubling all the officials is the counting of votes. As the printouts are very small (they are of the same width as ATM slips and of the same length in the case of BEL and smaller in length in case of ECIL) and are made of very thin thermal paper, they had serious problems in counting them during training that was imparted to them. The paper is so light weight that it will fly away even if you operate a ceiling fan at moderate speed. More than all this, the drudgery of counting paper is making them jittery. They have had it so good with paperless EVMs and resent manual counting of ballots. Counting scheduled for 25th July will throw up a lot of these problems.

May be it is too early to announce the final verdict but the field trial clearly marks a good beginning. The way forward is to quickly review, fix all the problems and implement the VVPAT system in real elections soon. Some by-elections to state assemblies are scheduled later this year and the Election Commission may consider use of VVPAT in them. Real elections may throw up newer challenges. And come February 2012, The Election Commission should consider using VVPAT on a large scale either in all or a large number of assembly constituencies in Uttar Pradesh assembly elections. In a year from now, I sincerely hope the paperless voting would be passé and India would usher in the new voting regime that makes elections transparent and verifiable.


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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby ShyamSP » 26 Jul 2011 06:24

Muppalla wrote:Voters thumbs up to VVPAT system for EVMs

Poll officials worried
While everyone seemed happy with the new system, officials involved in the conduct of elections were visibly unhappy. Tension was writ large on their faces, more so in polling stations where open printers were tested where the printout emerging from the printer had to be collected by the voter and deposited in ballot boxes. One official was keeping a close watch on the printout (sometimes standing next to the voter inside the voting compartment) so that no one takes it away from the polling booth as these votes will be counted to match with the electronic result. In a real election, this would constitute a breach and no official can afford do this.


Muppalla Garu,

Earlier EC announced a method for paper-verification that has paper votes destroyed without matching on the same election day. Here it sounds different that there is counting and matching with paper votes.

If you have knowledge on these things which is the EC approved method?

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Muppalla » 26 Jul 2011 06:49

^^^
EC hasn't approved yet anything but looks they will go with one of the methods tested. There are two serious things tested by EC in various constituencies via mock poll:
(1) A printer connected to EVM will print a vote and the voter has to collect and drop in a ballot box
(2) A printer connected to EVM will print a vote and pass through a glass pipeline so that the voter will see whom he voted before the paper automatically drops into the ballot box.

The process of counting is not defined. My guess is that by default it will be electronic counting. In case of challenge by the candidates, they will manually count the ballot box and if did not match exactly to electoning count then there will be repoll.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby ArmenT » 26 Jul 2011 09:01

^^^
I'm going to guess that the open printer solution may have a couple of its own problems.
(a) What if someone decides to take his printout with him as a souvenir, instead of depositing it in the box.
(b) Miscreant could easily pull a switcheroo and drop some blank papers in the box instead of his ballot and then claim foul play later.
(c) Miscreant could drop fake ballot papers in the box (been done in the past) and claim foul play later and demand a recount and then point out discrepancy in # of votes.

I'm thinking perhaps that the printout should also include an MD5 or SHA authentication code with each ballot. What do you guys think of this scheme?
(a) A few parties contesting the ballot are chosen at random and told to submit a number with a few digits (or a few letters of alphabet) in writing and bring it on election day.
(b) The key is entered into the EVM before voting starts, with a party rep. from each party validating that the right numbers and letters that their member submitted is indeed entered into the machine (and they need to be entered twice per member). After their submission is entered, the party rep signs off on the paper to validate that fact.
(c) Election supervisor can add a few digits and letters as well from a random # already chosen.
(d) The numbers and letters entered by the various parties are concatenated in order of entry to form the entire key.

All the papers that form the key are now separately placed in an envelope (along with the order that they were entered). Since each party entered their digits separately, they don't know what the entire key is. The key may optionally be run through an MD5 operation at this stage to form a secondary key and the secondary key used for the rest of the stuff described below, or we can just go with concatenating all the digits together and using that as the key.

Now for each vote, we take the key and concatenate 1, 2, 3 etc. to the end for each vote cast and then run the MD5 hash algorithm on it. Say key is 14532 originally (just randomly picking a key here, real key will be much longer because each party member will submit more than one digit or letter)
E.g
first vote cast: print MD5(145321)
second vote cast: print MD5(145322)
third vote cast: print MD5(145323)
...
NNNth vote cast: print MD5(14532NNN)

Now, for those of you who don't know what an MD5 or an SHA digest is, it takes a string of letters and numbers and transforms it with a bunch of well-defined mathematical operations and a 128 bit value (for MD5) or 160 bit (for SHA-1) is produced. The beauty is that just by changing one digit of the input string, a completely different hash value is produced. For instance:
MD5(145321) = 3e6f333f203cd2ded37c60444fcd0843 (in hexadecimal)
MD5(145322) = d29ee705e5768c51fc955f00f8e7ac4a
Now, the ordinary voter doesn't know the entire key (in this case, "14532") neither do any of the individual party members, as the key is comprised of pieces generated by different parties. The beauty of a hash algorithm like MD5 or SHA-1 is that it is very easy to do the forward calculation if one knows the key, but near impossible to reverse it in reasonable time (i.e.) if ten people vote and each one memorizes the MD5 hash that was generated perfectly and even knows what vote # their ballot was, they will still not be able to reverse engineer the key or predict what the hash output of the 11th vote cast is in any reasonable time. The same is true even if a 100 people were to memorize the hash values generated for their vote, as well as their vote number or even a 1000 people.

The computed MD5 or SHA value is printed along the bottom of the ballot paper in bar code and text form, along with the chosen vote. The hash value authenticates the vote.

So, now if there is a dispute, the agency simply opens the envelope where the original digits submitted by all parties are stored and re-enters the key and then generates a list of hash values for votes 1...5000 or whatever (remember, MD5 or SHA-1 are very easy to compute forwards). Then they can examine the hash values on each ballot and check them against the pre-generated list. That way, any hash values that are not on the list are obviously fake ballots and can be discarded. Any ballots where the same hash key occurs more than once are most likely duplicate forgeries, and therefore only one of them counts. Any hash values that are in the pre-computed list, but are not on any of the ballots indicate that the voter took the ballot paper home with him.

What do you guys think of this idea?

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Sachin » 27 Jul 2011 18:01

ArmenT wrote:I'm thinking perhaps that the printout should also include an MD5 or SHA authentication code with each ballot. What do you guys think of this scheme?

I remember seeing a bar-code being generated along with the other information (like symbol of the candidate selected) etc. This bar code I feel is a fail safe mechanism. Because numerical information related to the election year, election constituency and even the booth can be encoded here. This makes, putting empty sheets or faked ballot papers useless as the bar code reader will catch it.

One concern which a politician raised in Thiruvananthpuram was that some EVMs required the print outs to be collected manually and dropped into a box. His concern was simple - "People who have used the EVMs have a tendency to walk away, after pressing the button and hearing the beep. Most likely they will not collect the print out and drop it in the box. This will cause problems when tallying up".

I feel some more brainstorming is required to come up with a better system. This whole new process seems to be complicating things. It is becoming like a combination of old ballot paper voting+EVM.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby ASPuar » 27 Jul 2011 22:09

What man can do, man can undo. There is no such thing as fail safe.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Raja Bose » 27 Jul 2011 22:36

ASPuar wrote:What man can do, man can undo. There is no such thing as fail safe.


Exactly - that is why there needs to be a strictly enforced process for manufacturing, field operation, counting etc. to minimize that risk. Unfortunately our man Mehta-ji did not agree and thought only the EVM was a failure and that he had a fail safe method.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby ArmenT » 28 Jul 2011 10:00

Sachin wrote:I remember seeing a bar-code being generated along with the other information (like symbol of the candidate selected) etc. This bar code I feel is a fail safe mechanism. Because numerical information related to the election year, election constituency and even the booth can be encoded here. This makes, putting empty sheets or faked ballot papers useless as the bar code reader will catch it.

Yes, but there will be people who will claim that the winner's party knew the election constituency and booth in advance and made fake ballots ahead of time with the bar code already encoded. With the scheme I'm proposing, this is not possible because:

(a) The key is comprised of digits and numbers proposed by multiple parties contesting the election, so none of them can individually know the full key in advance.
(b) Each candidate's key is only revealed on the morning of the election, so no one can prepare fake papers in advance.
(c) MD5 or SHA-1 are easy to compute going forwards, but not backwards:
i.e I can easily compute MD5(145321) = 3e6f333f203cd2ded37c60444fcd0843 and MD5(145322) = d29ee705e5768c51fc955f00f8e7ac4a, but if I was told that MD5(XXXXX1) = 3e6f333f203cd2ded37c60444fcd0843 and MD5(XXXXX2) = d29ee705e5768c51fc955f00f8e7ac4a and asked to find XXXXX, it is not so easy and I have no way to predict what MD5(XXXXX3), MD5(XXXXX4) etc. will be. Now if XXXXX is of an unknown size and has both letters, digits and symbols, then it becomes even more harder. This makes forgery of ballot papers very hard because XXXXX is not known until election day and is built up from contributions by the various candidates. There is also no known efficient way to compute XXXXX in any time before the election ends or months after the election for that matter.
(d) When it comes to verification of ballot votes counts (in case of dispute only, where they verify against the paper ballots), then it is very easy to detect forgeries. The various losing parties cannot dispute that the bar codes were printed in advance, because they contributed to the parts of the key XXXXX on the morning of the election and they can easily verify the MD5 hashes for themselves because they can now see the entire key XXXXX after the election is done and they can easily compute MD5(XXXXX1), MD5(XXXXX2) etc. once XXXXX is known.
(e) Multiple ballot papers with the same MD5 hash indicate a forgery took place.

Of course to make things even more fun, before all the individual candidates enter their keys, there should be a random set of letters and digits entered by the election official and another one at the end. Therefore, even the first candidate in will not know what the key starts with and the last candidate will not know what the key ends with. And this randomization can be done by the EVM by asking for a few buttons to be pressed at random and recording the hundredth of a second time when each button is pressed and using that to generate the key. The machine can print out the keys randomly generated by this process on two pieces of paper and these are stored along with the parts of the key contributed by the candidates in the verification envelope. That way, even the election officials have no idea what the key starts or ends with until the morning of the election.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Pranav » 30 Aug 2011 07:07

ASPuar wrote:What man can do, man can undo. There is no such thing as fail safe.


Yes, but in some systems, abuse is easier to detect than others.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Pranav » 30 Aug 2011 07:09

Hari Seldon wrote:Pranav,

Heard rumor that SC is hearing a case on the voting system & may mandate a verifiable paper trail. That true? What're the juicy details of the case? Pls elaborate...


The EC did conduct a trial for a paper trail EVM. There are two models - one in which the ballot box is kept in front of the presiding officer and paper ballot is dropped manually by the voter. In the second model the ballot box is kept inside the EVM and the paper is dropped into it automatically, after being displayed for a few seconds through a window.

It seems the EC favours the second model. Unfortunately, it is still vulnerable to Trojans, because excess ballots could be printed and dropped automatically.

There is a case by Subramanian Swamy going on in the Delhi High Court, but the proceedings are moving rather slowly, imho. Also, there is no move to get an interim injunction to use paper ballots until the paper trail is put into place.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby sumishi » 02 Oct 2011 17:14

X-posting Mudy's post #107 from IF thread -- Evm: Dangers Of Trusting Them Too Much

Researchers Hack Voting Machine for $26
Researchers from the Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois have developed a hack that, for about $26 and an 8th-grade science education, can remotely manipulate the electronic voting machines used by millions of voters all across the U.S.

The researchers, Salon reported, performed their proof-of-concept hack on a Diebold Accuvote TS electronic voting machine, a type of touchscreen Direct Recording Electronic (DRE) voting system that is widely used for government elections


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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Muppalla » 20 Jan 2012 18:02

Voting machines to provide paper proof of ballot cast
Ghaziabad, Jan 20: Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) maker Bharat Electronics Ltd. (BEL) announced that voting machines will soon be updated to produce system generated paper proof of the ballot cast to make the election process more safer and tamper-proof.

Meanwhile, the maker of EVMs has been working on the technology for generating a paper evidence of the ballot with the specification provided by Election Commission of India.

BEL CMD Anil Kumar claimed that the upgraded EVMs would be ready for deployment during elections in the next three months.

"The software in the EVM will be modified and a printer will be attached to it. When you cast a vote, the serial number and some data will be generated in the form of a printout. It is to ensure that there is no malpractice in the voting system," he added.

The move has come after the leaders of several political parties complained in recent past that the EVMs had been tampered with to suit a particular voting trend.

Moreover, the paper evidence will be used later to verify the data stored in the EVMs. The EVM maker has assured that the new EVMs would be tamper-proof and secure for elections


The next step is to see printer fraud and ink fraud :)

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Pranav » 20 Jan 2012 19:53


First EC has to make a policy decision, which they have not done so far. Then testing, modifications, limited deployments etc will take us well past 2014, even if EC actually wants printers, which is doubtful.

The next step is to see printer fraud and ink fraud :)

Fraud is always possible in any system, but the principle is that the system should be transparent enough to make fraud visible.

If the printer is going to drop ballots automatically into a box, it is vulnerable. If the voter will be required to take the slip by hand and drop it manually into a box kept separately, it is better. And punched holes are better than ink.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby krishnan » 20 Jan 2012 20:52

I dont think you will need to drop the printout...its like receipt..

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Muppalla » 20 Jan 2012 23:10

krishnan wrote:I dont think you will need to drop the printout...its like receipt..


They tested two things and I don't know which one they are implementing. One is where the printtout goes through a glass enclosure to the ballot box. Before it drops into the box the voter will be able to check if his vote is right/wrong. I am not sure if it also generates a duplicate for the voter to take home.
The other one is it generates a receipt and the voter has to verify and put it into a box.

The plan is to count the ballots and see if they match the EVM counts.

There are several ways of fraud now:
(1) They have a magic paper and after the voter gets satisfied and drops into the ballot box, the slip changes from BJP to INC.
(2) They have all the votes in the Box before the voting starts and all the votes that comes into box during voting time magically vanishes.
(3) They change the EVM and also the box after the elections.
(4) A special ink that only know how to print INC but display the actual vote to the voter.


For any of the above things to happen, the candidates and their agents have to be duffers.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Dhiman » 20 Jan 2012 23:58

Muppalla wrote:I am not sure if it also generates a duplicate for the voter to take home.
The other one is it generates a receipt and the voter has to verify and put it into a box.

The plan is to count the ballots and see if they match the EVM counts.


Sir, I couldn't find any details, but wondering if anyone knows for sure if the new system requires voter to confirm that the paper ballot shows the correct vote or if the paper vote just drops into the ballot box without confirmation. I think that will make the difference.

There are several ways of fraud now:
(1) They have a magic paper and after the voter gets satisfied and drops into the ballot box, the slip changes from BJP to INC.
(2) They have all the votes in the Box before the voting starts and all the votes that comes into box during voting time magically vanishes.
(3) They change the EVM and also the box after the elections.
(4) A special ink that only know how to print INC but display the actual vote to the voter.


Unfortunately there is no such thing as a fool-proof secure system. The only way to maintain a secure system is to continuously stay one step ahead of the crooks. Having said that I do think the the fundamentals of a secure system will be in place if this combination electronic+paper voting is implemented. Additional security steps can be built on top and no doubt constant monitoring will be needed as usual.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Pranav » 21 Jan 2012 09:51

Muppalla wrote:There are several ways of fraud now:
(1) They have a magic paper and after the voter gets satisfied and drops into the ballot box, the slip changes from BJP to INC.
(2) They have all the votes in the Box before the voting starts and all the votes that comes into box during voting time magically vanishes.
(3) They change the EVM and also the box after the elections.
(4) A special ink that only know how to print INC but display the actual vote to the voter.

For any of the above things to happen, the candidates and their agents have to be duffers.


Actually, even without printer, the only way for fraud is if Santa Claus came flying and magically changed all the votes. The candidates and their agents would have to be duffers to not notice Santa Claus, no?

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Muppalla » 21 Jan 2012 22:55

Dhiman wrote:Unfortunately there is no such thing as a fool-proof secure system. The only way to maintain a secure system is to continuously stay one step ahead of the crooks. Having said that I do think the the fundamentals of a secure system will be in place if this combination electronic+paper voting is implemented. Additional security steps can be built on top and no doubt constant monitoring will be needed as usual.


Bingo.

The not so famous/celebrities such as GVL, Hariprasad fought for transparency in their own capabilities and convinced the divided opposition to get some transparency. Now the system is moving towards as much transparent it could be. Finer points are the next fight. Now everyone should work for as best system as possible for 2014.

The game now is to slow down this while doing lip service. The politicians and courts should ensure this new systems are ready for 2013 Assembly and 2014 LS elections.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby anmol » 21 Jan 2012 23:38

EVM's can print multiple copies of vote on paper containing (in text) Time, Unique ID, party voted for and same data within a QR code.

Election Commission keep one copy, give other copy to voter and may be even to Political Parties and independent observers.

All (EC-Voters-Parties-Observers) can easily scan these QR codes(possible with most new phones) and compare when need arises.

How hard is that ?

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Dhiman » 22 Jan 2012 03:14

Pranav wrote:Actually, even without printer, the only way for fraud is if Santa Claus came flying and magically changed all the votes. The candidates and their agents would have to be duffers to not notice Santa Claus, no?


Sir, the problem with electronic voting is that fraud can be done behind closed doors (by replacing components etc in the machine) and such fraud would be much more difficult to detect. So electronic voting by itself is not secure. Past experience (booth capturing, ballot box stuffing, etc) has shown that paper voting by itself is also not secure.

However, IMHO, a combination of both electronic+paper voting is significantly more secure than either electronic voting by itself or paper voting by itself. I see such a combination working as follows:

1. A voter will cast his vote electronically.
2. Electronic voting machine prints out the vote on a paper
3. Voter presses a button on the electronic machine to confirm that paper vote is correct, so that the electronic machine can record the vote.
4. The voter folds the paper to hide the vote (there are visual security marks printed on other side of the paper).
5. The voting official then visually inspects the folded paper to make sure that the paper has indeed been printed out of the machine.
6. The voter deposits the paper vote in ballot box in sight of the voting official.
7. Voting is complete at this point and election official presses a button on control unit to tell the voting machine to "lock" the electronic vote.
8. Control unit prints out a receipt that is handed to the voter

If for some reason, the voter fails to deposit paper in the ballot fox, the election official will not press the button to "lock" the electronic vote and the final paper receipt that is given to the voter indicates that his/her vote was properly recorded.

Now, we have two independent sources of truth, one electronic and one paper. These two sources of truth must now be handled completely separate and independent of each other. Electronic votes will be counted electronically by a group of people; while as, paper votes will be counted manually (without using any machines) by a different group of people.

Electronic and paper votes can then be correlated and the following things can happen:
1. Electronic and paper result perfectly match - good outcome.
2. Too many "unlocked" electronic votes - someone was trying to disrupt the voting process so that revoting will happen.
3. Significant deviation between electronic and paper votes - Fraud going on
- checking security mark behind paper vote will reveal whether the fraud is electronic or paper.
4. Minor deviations in result as a result of some problem in voting process
- for the first time in history we will know how flawed or good the voting process is and this deviation can be reduced over time by EC.

anmol wrote:EVM's can print multiple copies of vote on paper containing (in text) Time, Unique ID, party voted for and same data within a QR code.

Election Commission keep one copy, give other copy to voter and may be even to Political Parties and independent observers.

All (EC-Voters-Parties-Observers) can easily scan these QR codes(possible with most new phones) and compare when need arises.

How hard is that ?


The system must be kept as simple as possible. The simpler the system, the easier it is to ensure that it is secure. Also, the whole point of paper vote IMHO is to provide an alternate source of truth which is machine independent, so as far as I can see its good to include security marks on the ballot paper, but all counting of paper votes MUST be 100% manual without any machine intervention - right down to making sure that the final paper results are displayed on a blackboard with hand written numbers - no machine intervention what so ever - otherwise what's the point of maintaining a separate paper trail?

Pranav
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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Pranav » 25 Jan 2012 12:51

EVM case judgment is up on the web - http://lobis.nic.in/dhc/AKS/judgement/2 ... 792009.pdf

If interested in exploring how to take this further, please email at pranav dot brf at gmail. Thanks.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Virupaksha » 26 Feb 2012 15:49

X- post from Assembly elections thread

nawabs gave the below post
Lucknow room with EVMs gets flooded

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/indi ... 037383.cms
Electronic voting machines (EVMs) of nine constituencies of Lucknow district were damaged after water from an overhead tank seeped into the strongroom at the Government Technical Institute (GTI) in Lucknow. The EVMs were kept the strongroom after the polls on February 19. The Election Commission confirmed that some EVMs of Sarojininagar constituency were damaged.
Mohanlaganj constituency's EVMs are also kept in the room in GTI's architecture department. District Magistrate Anil Sagar, however, said there was no damage to the EVMs. Reporters were not allowed near the strongrooms. Joint Chief Electoral Officer Anita Meshram said, "An overflowing water tank has caused some damage to the strongroom. EVMs of Sarojininagar constituency were damaged. We will get to know the extent of the damage after the DM and other district officials examine the site." Sagar though had told UP chief electoral officer Umesh Sinha that the EVMs were safe. Sinha, who is in Delhi, said, "I have spoken to the DM. He told me that though there was leakage in the building, the strongrooms are safe. Officers are examining the situation." By 10 pm, most of the candidates from all major political parties had reached the spot. The DM refused to allow them to check the EVMs. Sarojininagar's SP candidate Sharda Pratap Shukla said he would request the EC to allow candidates to check the EVMs. Several candidates squatted near the GTI. Among them were Neeraj Bora and Faqir Siddiqui from Congress and Gomti Yadav and Juhie Singh from the Samajwadi Party.

Congress' Lucknow North candidate Bora said, "This is unimaginable. It is callous on the part of the Lucknow administration. Apathy of the officials makes me wonder if the administration has acted at the behest of the ruling government." Sources said CISF personnel posted at GTI on Faizabad Road spotted the overflowing water around 5 pm. They informed district officials. But DM Sagar reached the spot around 9.15 pm. SP candidate Juhie Singh said, "The DM is inaccessible while the DIG says he is unaware of any such thing. This only tells us how serious they are about the security of the strongroom." BJP spokesperson Vijay Pathak slammed the district administration. "They are supposed to save the EVMs and this is what they have done?" BJP's Lucknow East candidate Kalraj Mishra wondered how a tank near the strongroom could leak to damage EVM. GTI was selected as the counting centre for nine assembly constituencies of Lucknow on March 6. Lucknow district recorded about 58% polling on February 19. Nearly 61% of Sarojininagar electorate cast their votes while Mohanlalganj recorded 64%.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Vipul » 27 Aug 2012 04:31

Electronic voting machines with paper trail unlikely before next Lok Sabha elections.

With the 2014 general elections in sight, the Election Commission is scrambling to do what is proving to be a herculean task -- introducing new-age EVMs with a voter-verifiable paper audit trail. However, those questioning the tamper-proof nature of the EVMs and campaigning for a paper trail of the ballots may have to wait beyond the next Lok Sabha polls for a complete switchover to the new system.

According to sources in the EC, the huge costs involved -- given that 7 lakh of the 11 lakh existing EVMs deployed in Lok Sabha polls are incompatible with a printing unit -- coupled with the high incidence of snags associated with printers, have made the EC wary if it can manage a full-scale, new-age EVM-based general election by 2014. At most, senior officials at Nirvachan Sadan feel, the panel can introduce the new voter-verifiable paper trail system in some select states, while letting the other states vote with the old set of EVMs.

With elections 20 months away, the EC is holding trials for the new voter-verifiable paper trail-compatible EVM prototypes. The cost implications are huge. To update an existing EVM and have it attached to a printer is estimated to cost anything between Rs 8,000 to Rs 10,000. And if all the EVMs are to be updated, the total cost would work out to nearly Rs 1,000 crore. However, of the 11 lakh existing EVMs, only 4 lakh are compatible with printers. The remaining cannot even be updated.

Besides, printers being bulky and prone to snags like ink-related issues and jamming, especially in extreme climates, and the rather-impractical task of having them serviced and maintained in between elections, the EC views the solution as highly impractical in the long run.

There is the second option of going in for an entirely new set of EVMs, which will have an in-built hardware to enable a paper trail. This will cost approximately Rs 1,800 crore, EC sources said. According to an EC official, it is more feasible to replace all the existing EVMs and bring in brand new paper-trail-enabled EVMs. However, this will be impossible by the 2014 general election.

The need for a voter-verifiable paper audit trail was articulated following the 2009 Lok Sabha polls, with senior BJP leaders alleging that the EVM design was prone to tampering. Independent experts too stepped in to allege that the EVMs were not completely tamper-proof, though they could not clearly demonstrate this before the EC.

At an all-party meeting convened by the EC in October 2010, the BJP sought a paper trail to enable the voter to verify if his vote had been cast in favour of the party which he had chosen by pressing the relevant button on the EVM. This led the EC to set up an expert technical committee, headed by former IIT-Chennai director P V Indiresan, to look at the technical feasibility of introducing a voter-verifiable paper audit trail.

The committee favoured introduction of the paper trail system and recommended field testing of prototypes.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Sachin » 27 Aug 2012 11:51

Vipul wrote:Electronic voting machines with paper trail unlikely before next Lok Sabha elections.

:roll: Then how about going back to the age old system of ballot papers and ballot boxes? Or is this again a game plan to run the Lok Sabha elections with fudged EVMs so that shall I say certain vested interests can remain in power?

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby RamaY » 27 Aug 2012 17:21

Let us see how the constipationalists respond to this public hijacking of election system.

I guarantee that they demonstrate ultimate submission to the congress, because they are the true constipation of India.

Sigh..

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby hnair » 28 Aug 2012 11:03

:shock: There is no printer in the world that does not need a brick-sized manual

Why do they need printers et al? Just have a machine punch the logo that the voter selected in the existing machines, onto a slip that voter carries into the booth with a traceability code. Then the voter verifies if it is the right selection as the machine one. S/he comes out and drops the paper into a box in front of the commandeered-babu who mans the booth. The original machines can be used for quick tallying as is being done now. In case of challenges, one can dump the box' contents and start sifting the paper that has the punch marks.

The machine can be super simple, as it just makes a single pre-defined imprint and am pretty sure the current machines support THAT :)

(Sounds like the beginning of an Epsongate "billion printers needed"....)

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby ramana » 13 Feb 2013 22:46

So who makes this fragile EVMs? And who makes the programs that run them?

--------
fanne, About EVM fraud. Maybe the fraud is to distribute the opposition votes so that the INC candidate retains the largest number?

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Virupaksha » 14 Feb 2013 05:22

Congress in Gujarat alleges EVM rigging.

http://daily.bhaskar.com/article/GUJ-AH ... 2-NOR.html


Gujarat Polls: Congress jittery over exit polls, cry EVM rigging
Dailybhaskar.com | Dec 19, 2012, 13:55PM IST


http://deshgujarat.com/2012/12/19/in-co ... evm-again/

Ahmedabad, 19 December 2012

As per the story published in Gujarati daily Divya Bhaskar, former union minister and one of Gujarat Congress’s top leaders Naran Rathwa has alleged rigging in electronic voting machines during the Gujarat elections.


http://www.dnaindia.com/mobile/report.php?n=1799600

Bharatiya Janata Party rigged Bhachau EVM, alleges Gujarat Congress


http://yaadsms678.blogspot.com/2012/12/ ... uring.html

Wide scale rigging in EVMs during Gujarat elections - Naran Rathwa, a Congress leader.
Info Post
mahesh more
06:43
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Gujarat Polls: Congress jittery over exit polls, cry EVM rigging
Dailybhaskar.com | Dec 19, 2012, 13:55PM IST

http://www.dnaindia.com/ahmedabad/repor ... ss_1799600
BJP tinkered with EVM, misused state machinery during Gujarat polls: Congress
Facilities Maintenance www.ManagerPlus.comTrack maintenance schedules, work orders, assets, more w/ManagerPlus
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PTI : Ahmedabad, Wed Feb 13 2013, 11:20 hrs



Gujarat Congress today alleged that the ruling BJP was misusing the state machinery by tinkering with the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) in the recently-held municipalities polls.

http://www.dnaindia.com/ahmedabad/repor ... ss_1799600


Bharatiya Janata Party rigged Bhachau EVM, alleges Gujarat Congress
Published: Wednesday, Feb 13, 2013, 17:39 IST
By DNA Correspondent | Place: Gujarat | Agency: DNA


Gujarat Congress on Tuesday claimed to have won in 19 of 76 municipalities that went to polls on Sunday, but state election commission (SEC) has credited the party with only nine clear victories.


http://www.indianexpress.com/comments/b ... ./1073509/
BJP tinkered with EVM, misused state machinery during Gujarat polls: Congress
Ahmedabad: Gujarat Congress today alleged that the ruling BJP was misusing the state machinery by tinkering with the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) in the recently-held municipalities polls. "The allegations that the BJP indulged in EVM tinkeringhave been proved by an incident in Bhachau taluka of


http://www.niticentral.com/2012/12/in-c ... again.html

In Congress camp in Gujarat, EVM cry again

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby VikramS » 04 Mar 2013 03:09

ramana wrote:So who makes this fragile EVMs? And who makes the programs that run them?

--------
fanne, About EVM fraud. Maybe the fraud is to distribute the opposition votes so that the INC candidate retains the largest number?



https://twitter.com/offstumped/status/3 ... 9473396736

It seems post Pokhran-II Jesse Helms asked for the possibility of a "Regime Change in India".

Then there is the rise of the EJs under W...

Virupaksha
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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Virupaksha » 09 Jul 2013 22:45

present url: http://eenadu.net/news/newsitem.aspx?item=state&no=23
archive url: http://archives.eenadu.net/07-08-2013/n ... tate&no=23

Rough translation

7 thousand votes go missing in Punganur
Eenadu, Tirupati: Can the andhra pradesh voter's database server be hacked and bulk delete your opponents votes!.. Can the list be modified as one wishes..! The missing votes in Punganur constituency of Chittor district are currently raising these very doubts. Hundreds of votes in each village of that constituency have been erased. The officials initially tried to overwhelm saying no such thing has taken place. They said that they had a copy of the list and that it would be the authentic list. Before notification of elections, usually there are changes in the voter's list. Those to be deleted will be striked off on the list with red ink. These people are not allowed to vote. When the list was examined, the officials said "how is this possible?" and are rolling their eyes in wonder. 90% of the missing votes belong to congress and TDP. They are all the competetors of YSRCP leader, former minister Peddi Reddy RamaChandra Reddy. This is raising the suspicion that his group has used back room tactics for doing this. It seems in the constituency more than 7000 votes have gone missing.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby SaiK » 10 Jul 2013 03:29

we can't take one step forward and do a two step reverse. we have to strengthen the EVM with an augmented box by introducing the capability to generate reports is very important step forward. reports should also include in our case, gps location, timestamp, of all events on the device... more sensors, especially to tampering, and immediate trigger of tampering alerts, gpsirnss location and time. And all these reports are made available for junta on line.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Muppalla » 08 Sep 2013 16:51

Sushupti wrote:EVM paper trail used for first time

New Delhi: The Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) with electronic voting machines was used for the first time to count votes in Nagaland's Tuensang district Saturday.

According to an Election Commission statement issued Saturday, polling for the bypoll to the Noksen (ST) assembly constituency was held Sep 4.

Under the VVPAT system, developed by the Electronics Corporation of India Limited and the Bharat Electronics Limited, a printer is attached to the balloting unit of the voting machine.

When a voter casts vote by pressing the button, besides a red light glowing against the candidate's name and the party symbol, the printer generates a paper slip containing serial number, name and party symbol of the candidate for whom vote has been cast.

The voter can see this paper slip through a window covered by glass on the printer. This enables the voter to verify whether the vote cast has been correctly recorded.

After some time, the slip automatically gets cut and falls into the box permanently attached below the printer.

In case of doubt, the paper slips can be counted at the time of counting and tallied with the number of votes recorded in the voting machine's control unit.


http://www.sify.com/news/evm-paper-trai ... ajgdj.html

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Rahul Mehta » 11 Oct 2013 07:19

On 31-jul-2009, I gave newspaper-ad in Indian Express Delhi, Ahmedabad, Mumbai citing the fact that if non-80G-activists or paid-political-parties put 65+ candidates, then EC will be forced to use paper ballot , see https://facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151109562951922 . I asked Subramanian Swamy to publicize this proposal in activists, but SS never passed this information. . Then in oct-2012, I gave first page ad in Gujarat Samachar Ahmedabad citing same fact on 65 candidates, see https://facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151113987121922 . And via Facebook, I and other Right to Recall party members informed 1000s of non-80G-activists. BST activists also played important role.

As more and more activists knew about 65 candidates feature or loophole, they asked Subramanian Swamy about it. Subramanium Swamy kept dilly dallying , but when number of activists grew large, finally Subramaniam Swamy was forced to say on tweeter in public that "in case ECI does not use the new VVPAT EVM in some constituencies, I urge 64 PTs of that constituency to file nominations as Independents. " , see https://twitter.com/Swamy39/status/387759320537919488 .

But please note that SS could have filed 65 candidates in one assembly election after may-2009 to create a demo. But he never did that. Why not? Because he never wanted activists to know about this 65 candidate limitation. But when activists started knowing anyway, he was left with no option but to state it. And now MNC\Missionary-paid media will now give credit to their agent SS.

So my media-advt and facebook campaign worked. Through advertisements and FB etc , I could inform 10000-50000 non-80G-activists about 65 candidate loophole. And this forced Subramanian Swamy to tell it to many more.

====

With 65 candidate loophole known to all, EVM is now dead. So CIA will now not use EVM . And anyway, CIA has now facebook to influence over 10% votes of India --- about 5% directly via facebook and about another 5% via facebook users . So one tool of CIA namely EVM is now gone. But they have another tool namely Facebook ready.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Raja Bose » 11 Oct 2013 08:35

^^^Rahul Mehta is back!!! Balle Balle! Now I will pay Rs.10/- to talati for allowing Right to Recall Rahul Mehta (back into BRF). :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :twisted:

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby chaanakya » 11 Oct 2013 19:54

Whether Pranav is alter-ego of RM Ji??

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Rahul Mehta » 11 Oct 2013 20:14

chaanakya wrote:Whether Pranav is alter-ego of RM Ji??


I have ONLY one profile on WHOLE internet be BRF or orkut or Facebook or email or Yahoo groups --- and it is my real name only

Pranav is someone else, not me.

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Re: Should we discontinue EVMs?

Postby Muppalla » 30 Nov 2013 02:56

Mystery chip on EVM presses panic button
BHOPAL: The people's verdict is locked away in EVMs stashed in strong-rooms guarded by paramilitary forces, but 10 days to D-Day, conspiracy theories are afloat. While Congress alleged EVMs could be tampered with, the seizure of an electronic chip on Tuesday from a voting machine at a remote booth in Sagar has given grist to political intrigue.

The device - larger than the size of a standard mobile sim card and three small batteries - was found wrapped in black cloth, below the EVM, said sources. District election officer Yogendra Sharma said a probe has been launched to ascertain whether the device had any impact during voting.

The officer summoned polling officers of Booth No. 56 in Surkhi constituency on Thursday and directed returning officer Suresh Agrawal to submit a report on this issue. "I am waiting for a report of the returning officer before taking action. We will send the device for forensic analysis," said Sharma.

Panic buttons were pressed after Congress candidate from Surkhi, Kamlesh Baghel, lodged a complaint naming a local resident, C P Singh, as the brain behind the device. Singh went underground hours after the complaint was lodged giving credence to the conspiracy angle.

"Singh telephoned me on November 21 seeking an appointment. He said three EMVs can be manipulated with a single remote control. I did not hear him out. On polling day when my agent reported seizure of a device, I recalled Singh's offer," said Baghel.

"Singh is on the run ever since I sent my driver to his house to enquire about the device. He sent several SMSs on my cellphone, saying he can use this device to delete all votes from the EVM." One of the SMSs sent to Baghel's phone by the suspect reads, "abi bhi sab kuch ho sakta hey, evm ki memory ko khali kiya ja skta hey. Lekin isme apna bhi ghata ho sakta hey. Maine evm factory mey kaam kiya hey." (Manipulation can still be done. The EVM memory can be formatted, but it could have an adverse effect too. I have worked in an EVM manufacturing company).

He sent more than 10 SMSs to the Congress candidate, which was forwarded to the investigating officers.

District police have launched hunt for Singh, who has since sneaked into Gujarat. "We are trying to hunt him down," said superintendent of polilce, Abhay Singh.



Experts claim that a 2x2 mm chip can receive radio signals from a distance of 100 metres. If these EVMs use such a chip, then the candidate's 'number' can allegedly be transmitted to the EVM from a distance any time before counting and the machines can change the votes inside. This leaves no traces and ensures that their favourite candidate wins, say experts.


Chief electoral officer Jaideep Govind claims the EVM machines are tamper-proof. "There is no need to worry," he said.


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