Hack the Vote: The Simulation of Vote Hacking at DEF CON

Hacktivists’ demos warn that elections are hackable.


DEF CON, started in 1992 by the Dark Tangent, is the world’s largest running and underground hacking conference held annually at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. It is a convention attended by various people from hackers, to journalists, to lawyers, to cybersecurity professionals, to federal government employees. At the second annual DEF CON Voting Village, a part of the convention that seeks to exploit voting machines to better understand vulnerabilities, an 11-year old boy managed to hack into a replica of the Florida state election website, making it appear that 2016 independent presidential candidate Darrell Castle won the state. An 11-year-old girl also managed to make changes to the same Florida replica site in about 15 minutes, tripling the number of votes there.

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