Texas Counties Asked To Switch Voting Machines

voting machine
Photo credit Tarrant County

DALLAS (KRLD) - Progressive groups are asking 29 Texas counties to switch voting machines ahead of the 2020 elections.

The ACLU of Texas, Public Citizen and Protect Democracy are urging the counties to switch to systems that provide a paper record of every vote that can be audited in case of cyber malfunction. 

Protect Democracies Jamila Benkato says the counties in question use digital systems and have no plans to change. She says Texas is one of the last states that allows paperless voting systems.

"Even within Texas, counties are getting smart, they are prioritizing systems that can be audited, we are trying to do our part to push counties to make those choices in the urgent fashion that's called for." She calls this an urgent national security issue. "There's widespread bi-partisan consensus at the highest level of the US intelligence community that US election systems are in the crosshairs, especially going into 2020."

The letter to the 29 counties details flaws found in current machines, including vulnerable ports used to network machines together, programming errors that allow execution of malware and insecure or nonexistent cryptography.

Benkato says, "Texas is rich in computer and cyber security experts who not only are experts on election systems, but who are willing and able to provide advice and guidance as counties make these really critical decisions."

The most populous county in Texas, Harris, is on the list. 

The letter was sent to the following counties:

Bee County

Brown County

Burnet County

Cass County

Fannin County

Fort Bend County

Galveston County

Grimes County

Hale County

Hardin County

Harris County

Hill County