Virginia Department of Elections has called for the decertification of Direct Record Electronic (DRE) voting machines in the state. The Department of Elections cited risks with the lack of a voter-verifiable paper audit trail and troubling reports from DEF CON. Earlier this year hackers were given physical access to the voting machines. Every voting machine, around 30 in total, were hacked by the end of the conference.
The Virginia State Board of Elections voted and approved the request effective immediately. According to the press release, 22 localities within the state currently use DRE voting machines.
“The security of the election process is always of paramount importance. The Department is continually vigilant on matters related to security of voting equipment used in Virginia,” said Edgardo Cortés, Virginia’s Commissioner of Elections. “The ability to meaningfully participate in our democracy is one of the most important rights that we have as citizens, and the Department of Elections is dedicated to maintaining voters’ confidence in the democratic process.”
James Alcorn, Chair of the State Board of Elections said “Our No. 1 priority is to make sure that Virginia elections are carried out in a secure and fair manner.
The following localities still use the now decertified DRE voting machines: Bath, Buchanan, Chesapeake, Colonial Heights, Culpeper, Cumberland, Emporia, Falls Church, Gloucester, Hopewell, Lee, Madison, Martinsville, Norfolk, Poquoson, Portsmouth, Rappahannock, Russell, Surry, Sussex, Tazewell, and Washington.
The Department notified all 22 localities about the security concerns in early August to allow for enough time to transition by the November election. As of the press release, Seven of the localities have contracted for new equipment and three have pending contracts.
As of today, BallotPedia reports 15 states that have DRE machines without a paper trail in localities. The list includes: Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia