February 18, 2018

The Future of DRE Voting Machines

Last week at the EVT/WOTE workshop, Ari Feldman and I unveiled a new research project that we feel represents the future of DRE voting machines. DRE (direct-recording electronic) voting machines are ones where voters cast their ballots by pressing buttons or using a touch screen, and the primary record of the votes is stored in a computer memory. Numerous scientific studies have demonstrated that such machines can be reprogrammed to steal votes, so when we got our hands on a DRE called the Sequoia AVC Edge, we decided to do something different: we reprogrammed it to run Pac-Man.

As more states move away from using insecure DREs, there’s a risk that thousands of these machines will clog our landfills. Fortunately, our results show that they can be productively repurposed. We believe that in the not-so-distant future, recycled DREs will provide countless hours of entertainment in the basements of the nation’s nerds.

To see how we did it, visit our Pac-Man on the AVC Edge voting machine site.