There’s an predetermination hack built earlier the 2020 predetermination that tin instantaneously swap the bubbles connected your ballot. The “filled in” bubble of your campaigner is moved to the hackers’ preferred campaigner and swapped retired with that bare bubble. The alteration is made earlier the “ballot Image” is stored connected the predetermination server and earlier it’s tabulated. By utilizing the voter’s ain marking benignant & penmanship, these changes are undetectable to the quality eye.
Here’s the scenario. Using a bluish pen you capable successful the “Trump” bubble connected a ballot. Election officials insert this ballot into a tabulator. Those pixels surrounding the Trump bubble are swapped successful milliseconds with the bare Biden bubble pixels. After these changes are made, the ballot representation is saved to the EMS, and the campaigner selections update the predetermination totals. If an predetermination jurisdiction uses their integer “Ballot Images” to behaviour an audit, they WILL NOT find these changed ballots.
Gateway Pundit created the beneath animation to supply a ocular of however this predetermination onslaught works (or presumption here). Any existent predetermination onslaught utilizing this method has nary ocular component. It operates down the scenes, wholly hidden.
To behaviour this benignant of an predetermination attack, atrocious actors conscionable request a illustration ballot. These are published good up of each elections. The illustration ballot is utilized to find the nonstop bubble positions. The ballot is segmented into a grid oregon “bounding boxes“. Vertical and horizontal lines expanse the ballot to precisely find the targeted candidate’s bubbles. Bounding boxes are made astir each bubble. Extra achromatic abstraction is added astir the bubbles to relationship for penmanship that strays extracurricular the bubble. This becomes the template for that election. The pixels wrong these boxes are what they swap.
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Prior to the election, the attacker specifies the template, which races they privation to impact (Pres, Senate, etc), and by however much. While ballots are being scanned, this malicious bundle keeps a moving tally of the “real” ballot results. Ballot images are changed connected the alert to execute the desired predetermination outcome. To debar detection, attackers tin specify conscionable capable manipulated images to triumph the race, but not by alarming amounts. The lone mode to drawback this hack is to comparison the archetypal insubstantial ballot to the ballot image.
Awhile backmost 2 University of Michigan students successfully wrote this malicious bundle utilizing lone 398 lines of code. Their “Automated Ballot Manipulation” video and 18 leafage whitepaper amusement the details. Undergrad Jeremy Wink and grad pupil Kart Kandula developed it portion astatine UofM’s Security Lab. They were nether the supervision of predetermination adept J. Alex Halderman. Using the voters’ ain handwriting markings to change ballots is simply a genuinely devious approach. Depending connected the computer, the full process takes astir 40 milliseconds (.04 seconds). It leaves nary representation artifacts behind, truthful the changes are undetectable.
The students tested it against EAC-certified scanners. They besides tested it against each six antithetic ballot styles utilized successful America. These travel from manufacturers Dominion, ES&S, Clear Ballot, Diebold, and 2 styles from Hart InterCivic. The ballot styles for Dominion machines were the easiest to change. The Hart eScan ballots were the astir difficult. The bundle tin determination each shapes utilized connected predetermination ballots including bubbles, circles, boxes, rectangles, ovals, etc.
This blase bundle algorithm scores and rates the marked bubbles arsenic Sensed, Ignored, oregon Marginal. Some voters mightiness marque excessive scribbles oregon stray into the letters of a candidate’s name. If the pixel country can’t beryllium perfectly swapped leaving nary artifacts, the algorithm skips that ballot and moves connected to the adjacent one. Configuring the bundle settings precise high, truthful it leaves nary hint evidence, they were capable to alteration votes connected astatine slightest 50% of each ballots.
To exemplify an amerciable predetermination cognition the 2 men created an onslaught bundle called “UnclearBallot”. They disguised the onslaught by inserting malicious codification into the “Windows Driver” that allows the scanners to pass with the predetermination system. They created a “microdriver” that fundamentally “wraps” astir the archetypal driver. This is what changes the ballots. But their malicious bundle tin tally successful immoderate environment. It doesn’t person to beryllium a driver. It tin beryllium rewritten for a machine’s firmware, installed connected an Election Management Server (EMS), and truthful on.
They simulated an onslaught utilizing 181,541 completed insubstantial ballots from Clackamas County. Oregon. They changed the results of ballot proposition. UnclearBallot was configured to lone modify marks with a “high confidence” the alteration would not beryllium noticeable. They were capable to change 62,400 ballot images, which is 34%. Afterwards, they selected 1,000 altered ballots astatine random for examination. Human auditors could NOT observe immoderate grounds of ballot manipulation. Had they lowered the “confidence” settings, they could person changed 89% of the ballots. Only 11% were rejected, had nary accidental of changes.
What’s astir alarming is that Matthew Bernhard was involved, a Research Engineer astatine the hard near Voting Works. The Center For Democracy and Technology (CDT) created Voting Works, spun it retired successful 2018. CDT’s large donors are the Soros Open Society, Ford Foundation, MacArthur Foundation, Google, Facebook, Amazon. Others progressive successful this predetermination task were Chinese speakers Henry Meng, Jensen Hwa, and Kevin Chang. In 2019 CISA and DHS partnered with Voting Works to propulsion their bogus Risk Limiting Audits into galore States earlier the 2020 election. It’s present utilized by 10 States. Voting Works has been an obnoxious proponent of mail-in ballots.
Students Jeremy and Kart noted determination are technologies disposable that tin observe this benignant of representation manipulation connected ballots. However, they were incapable to find 1 predetermination jurisdiction utilizing immoderate of this technology. Their squad besides suspects it would go an arms race. When the bundle that detects “image manipulation” advances, attackers volition get it, and change their malicious codification to decision it.
NOTE: A “driver” allows an outer instrumentality similar a printer oregon scanner to pass with the operating system. The operator is the archetypal happening the outer instrumentality talks to. In a nutshell, the information flows from a scanner, to the driver, to the OS, and past to the hard drive. By putting the malicious codification astatine the precise opening of this flow, it tin alteration ballots earlier the OS adjacent knows astir it. The ballot bubbles are changed earlier the “Ballot Image” gets stored connected the predetermination server.