Former CIA director: secure US elections with open-source voting machines

Former CIA director R. James Woolsey and legendary free software creator Brian "bash" Fox took to the New York Times's op-ed page to explain that proprietary software and voting machines don't mix, because unless anyone who wants to can audit the software that powers the nation's elections, exploitable bugs will lurk in them, ready to be used by bad guys to screw up the vote-count.

Open-source software is simply software for which the original source code is made freely available and may be redistributed and modified. In the case of voting, open-source software systems would be overseen by public-private partnerships between counties and vendors.

Open-source systems are tried and tested. A majority of supercomputers use them. The Defense Department, NASA and the United States Air Force all use open-source systems, because they know this provides far more security. Every step in our voting process should use software that follows these examples.

To Protect Voting, Use Open-Source Software [R. James Woolsey and Brian J. Fox/New York Times]

(via Naked Capitalism)

(Image: Seattle Municipal Archives, CC-BY)