On the heels of the voting app debacle during the Iowa Democratic caucuses, researchers at MIT have found multiple security- and privacy-related vulnerabilities in an online voting app, Voatz, used in West Virginia during the 2018 midterm elections and on track to be used again for the 2020 contests, according to a security audit released this week.
West Virginia stepped out in front of other states by being the first to use an online voting app, but Voatz, which now also has been used in federal, state and municipal elections in West Virginia, Denver, Oregon, and Utah - and in the 2016 Massachusetts Democratic Convention and the 2016 Utah Republican Convention - “has vulnerabilities that allow different kinds of adversaries to alter, stop, or expose a user’s vote, including a sidechannel attack in which a completely passive network adversary can potentially recover a user’s secret ballot,” the MIT audit found.
Privacy issues abound as well through the use of third-party services to provide functionality crucial to the app, which targets overseas military and other absentee voters.
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