Restoring Trust in Elections

We here in the US like to believe that we’re the gold standard for democracy. And yet, in recent years, much of the electorate has lost faith in the outcome of our elections. Many security researchers have found concerning vulnerabilities in our voting systems, and yet we have no evidence that those vulnerabilities have actually been exploited. Many people believe that people are voting multiple times or that ineligible people are voting, and yet study after study shows that voter fraud is nearly non-existent. How can we restore trust in our election results? What changes must we make to our election systems and processes to promote complete transparency and remove doubt? Today I’ll dig deep into this complicated topic with Ben Adida, founder and Executive Director of VotingWorks.

Interview Notes

Further Info

Table of Contents

Use these timestamps to jump to a particular section of the show.

  • 0:03:28: What is the mission of VotingWorks and what drove you to found it?
  • 0:04:39: How do election work, exactly, here in the US?
  • 0:12:26: How are all the votes tabulated and reported?
  • 0:14:11: Where are US elections most vulnerable to influence?
  • 0:19:52: How does accessibility impact security in elections?
  • 0:24:27: How can we harden the election systems and processes?
  • 0:31:16: How to risk-limiting audits work?
  • 0:33:11: How vulnerable are election computers to hacking?
  • 0:36:37: If our systems are vulnerable, why haven’t they been hacked?
  • 0:43:37: How can we best convince people that our election outcomes are valid?
  • 0:51:30: How prevelent is voter fraud in the US?
  • 0:53:56: Do we have federal minimum guidelines for election security?
  • 0:56:52: Why aren’t election systems open for third party review?
  • 0:58:25: How do I learn about my local election systems and processes?
  • 1:04:22: Wrap-up
  • 1:07:34: Looking ahead