goombah99 writes "Bev Harris of BlackBoxVoting.org has acquired an actual Diebold Acu-vote ballot scanner. Rummaging through King County's trash, she managed to get her hands on some of their tags and seals. She has since demonstrated a successful penetration of the seals without breaking them ... all in under 4 minutes with no training or technical skills required. There's a nice how-to with photos over at Verified Voting New Mexico." More from goombah99 below."The demo is particularly relevant in light of the recent experience in Ohio in which there were large discrepancies between the electronic record and the paper trail, and also since many counties still permit the machines to be taken home by individuals before voting day (as a means of distributing them to precincts). These 'sleepover' machines were involved in the contentious narrow-margin San Diego Election, and are in continued practice in many states. Moreover, it's common practice for counties to contract out deliveries to third parties, such as in New Mexico where in one election, unlicensed delivery drivers took the machines on an unauthorized field trip and only got caught when they crashed the delivery truck after a stop at Hooters. The good news here is that the penetrated Diebold system in the photo essay is an optical scan system. It's not a touchscreen electronic voting system, so there is a paper trail. What hack really shows is that without mandatory random spot checks on the paper ballots, these may be as potentially vulnerable as the touchscreen direct recording electronic voting systems. It's perhaps worth noting that the open source voting system being developed by the Open Voting Consortium features a 100% reconciliation of every single paper ballot with an independent electronic record."