Codebreaker

Pac-Man Hacks Voting Machines

John Moe Aug 20, 2010

As we head into another election season, two computer scientists, J. Alex Halderman of the University of Michigan and Ariel Feldman of Princeton, wanted to make a point about the insecurity of electronic voting. So they reprogrammed a Sequoia touch-screen voting machine to play Pac-Man instead of showing plain-old ballots. As Tech Dirt points out:

They did this in three afternoons (and remember, these machines are often left totally unguarded, in the open at polling places for days before elections) without breaking any of the “tamper-resistant” seals that are supposed to alert anyone to any foul play. As Halderman noted:
We could have reprogrammed it to steal votes, but that’s been done before, and Pac-Man is more fun!

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