Paperless voting machines could be cause for concern, says IU policy analyst

INDIANAPOLIS (Network Indiana) — When you vote you may or may not get a paper record of it, depending on where you live. In 52 of the state’s 92 counties, the voting machines are paperless, and that’s a problem, says a new study from the IU Public Policy Institute.

That will not be rectified by Nov. 3, and voting machines are already being used for early voting.

IU policy analyst Joti Martin, said not having a paper trail is a security issue.

“The DRE, which is direct recording electronic voting machines, do not have a paper trail. So, they’re paperless. The reason the paper trial is important is if either voting records are manipulated or malfunction occurs, you’ll want to detect those issues,” she said.

If the record is all electronic, the chances of accurately auditing the vote if there is manipulation, are worse.

She said a federal lawsuit was filed to replace paperless voting machines in Indiana in 2019. That same year, a law was passed requiring all Indiana counties to move to paper trail voting systems by 2030. However, this timeline leaves elections vulnerable for the next decade.

“That just doesn’t leave enough room for all those jurisdictions to have all those voting machines replaced by the 2020 election,” said Martin. That election is in progress.

While some areas in the state have already moved to paper-based voting systems, other jurisdictions say that a lack of funding is holding them back.

Martin said it’s important that people still vote.

“Please vote. By not voting you’re guaranteeing that your vote doesn’t count.”