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Political Party's Leadership Election Hit By DDoS Attack

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the politics-of-the-future dept.

Botnet 100

New submitter lyran74 writes "Saturday's electronic leadership vote for Canada's New Democratic Party was plagued by delays caused by a botnet DDoS attack, coming from over 10,000 machines. Details are still scarce, but Scytl, who provided electronic voting services, will have to build more robust systems in the future in anticipation of such attacks. Party and company officials say an audit proved the systems and integrity of the vote were not compromised."

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100 comments

Obviously... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489197)

...that'll be the French

Re:Obviously... (2)

compro01 (777531) | about 2 years ago | (#39489263)

Unlikely. Quebec was all over the NDP last election.

Unless they changed their minds since Jack's gone.

Re:Obviously... (1)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about 2 years ago | (#39489487)

10 000 IP addresses is a pretty small botnet, it could be pretty much anyone, from anywhere, even someone just trying to get their moment of fame from the fact that the NDP convention was being broadcast live.

And keep in mind the NDP has no fucking clue what it's doing yet now that they're down layton, and it doesn't really matter since they won't be able to run in an election for at least 3 years (the conservatives have a majority) so this was a good time for a system like this, even if it completely failed there's really no harm that can be done. Literally the worst thing that could have come of it was the wrong leader for a party that has no power, that has 3 years to fix the problem or find someone they like better.

Re:Obviously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489533)

The options are still:
Conservatives, "My way or the highway and by the way it's called the Harper Government" Stephen Harper
Liberals, "We don't tolerate any corruption except the one we're doing ourselves with our friends" led by who-the-fuck-is Bob Rae
NDP, "We miss Jack but we're still fighting for the little guys"... eh... not sure who's at the head of the NDP at the moment.

So, no, most of the Québécois would be the last people to try and do that to the NDP.

Re:Obviously... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489581)

Since in the last election liberal did stupid shit like automated call to insult people in the name of others parties, I wouldn be surprised if some liberal fag paid for this.

To be fair (1)

microbox (704317) | about 2 years ago | (#39490361)

Liberals, "We don't tolerate any corruption except the one we're doing ourselves with our friends" led by who-the-fuck-is Bob Rae

To be fair, the liberals didn't brush the corruption scandal under the carpet, but did the right thing be opening a public inquiry. It was politically stupid, and Martin got slaughtered for it, but it was the right thing by the country.

Re:To be fair (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39490787)

Punish the people that do the right thing and the people who do wrong end up on top...imagine that.

Re:To be fair (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about 2 years ago | (#39491197)

To be fair, the liberals didn't brush the corruption scandal under the carpet, but did the right thing be opening a public inquiry. It was politically stupid, and Martin got slaughtered for it, but it was the right thing by the country.

Right. That's why they tried to ship off everyone off to diplomatic posts to hide their dealings, and only when caught and parliament pushed into a public inquiry did things happen. The liberals were worse than corrupt, they were complicit to the point of trying to actively hide it.

Re:To be fair (1)

Formalin (1945560) | about 2 years ago | (#39491365)

As opposed to the conservative method of saying that didn't happen, or outright blaming the opposition. (in-n-out, robocalls, gazebos and helicopter rides).

Re:To be fair (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39492625)

Remind me again ... which party has been in contempt of parliament?
Twice.
Then talk to me again when this robo-call thing plays out.
Then ask a fisheries / climate / any other scientist.

Cronyism is one thing ..... then there's Harper.

Outside of politics, just ... as a citizen ... it makes me sad.

Rage against the old boy's club, the cronyism and the favors of the other parties if you want, I'll agree that it's wrong - but it's acknowledged as part of the game. Even with all that, it's known that there is a line you do not cross .... into contempt for the government and the citizens of Canada.

He said we wouldn't recognize Canada when he was through with it. I already don't.

This isn't about left vs right, east vs west, rural vs urban, or any other simple division you'd like to throw up.

Re:Obviously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39490553)

Unlikely. Quebec was all over the NDP last election.

The Catholic church told the elderly to vote NDP to demonstrate to the Bloc who controlled the political body. The Bloc has learned their lesson, and they'll be back next time 'round.

Re:Obviously... (1)

alexo (9335) | about 2 years ago | (#39497949)

Unlikely. Quebec was all over the NDP last election.

Unless they changed their minds since Jack's gone.

Voters are fickle. Layton was very charismatic, Montreal-born and fluently bilingual, I believe that that counted more than his political stance.

Re:Obviously... (1)

compro01 (777531) | about 2 years ago | (#39501797)

Not sure yet about the charisma yet, but Mulciar was also raised in Quebec, also bilingual, and was a member of the National Assembly for 13 years (and a cabinet minister for 3 years under Charest) before going into federal politics.

Initially, the prospects for Quebec remaining orange look promising.

Scumbags (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489209)

Whoever did this, for any reasons whatsoever, is a total douche by destroying the democratic process.

No (2, Interesting)

sudonymous (2585501) | about 2 years ago | (#39489377)

Whoever did this is a hero, for demonstrating that the electronic voting process was broken, and in particular for doing a proof of concept attack on a "party leadership" election which doesn't really matter very much.

Re:No (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489479)

that's like saying a serial killer is a hero for showing that you can get away with murder

Re:No (0)

rtfa-troll (1340807) | about 2 years ago | (#39489639)

that's like saying a serial killer is a hero for showing that you can get away with murder

Firstly if this was a murder it was a failure; more like a pathetic assault using an over-ripe banana. This wouldn't even make a Monty Python sketch.

Secondly; the difference between a "serial killer" and a "war hero sniper" is whether they are attacking people who are a threat to you. Electronic elections are a threat to all humanity so it is always acceptable to attack them. The main thing which makes this a fail is the fact that the party is still able to pretend that the election was not influenced.

Let's say it loud and clear. The only safe and acceptable way to interfere with elections is in an obvious way which ensures that a candidate completely unacceptable to the establishment gets a majority of votes. Bugs bunny if you can't pick. The Green party or the Libertarians if you mess with an American election. Vladimir Putin, for any other country outside Russia; Anna Politkovskaya if you are messing with the Russian elections.

Re:No (1)

FoolishOwl (1698506) | about 2 years ago | (#39493205)

Let's say it loud and clear. The only safe and acceptable way to interfere with elections is in an obvious way which ensures that a candidate completely unacceptable to the establishment gets a majority of votes. Bugs bunny if you can't pick. The Green party or the Libertarians if you mess with an American election. Vladimir Putin, for any other country outside Russia; Anna Politkovskaya if you are messing with the Russian elections.

Or, you know, the New Democratic Party in Canada, who are the victims here.

Re:No (1)

Trax3001BBS (2368736) | about 2 years ago | (#39490663)


I totally agree.

Electronic voting has been proven time and time again to be seriously flawed, universally not just in Canada.

Re:No (1)

Fancia (710007) | about 2 years ago | (#39491165)

In Canada, the Prime Minister isn't directly elected, but is the position given to the leader of the party with the most seats in Parliament. So far from not mattering, Canadian party leadership elections determine who may be the prime minister.

Re:No (1)

sudonymous (2585501) | about 2 years ago | (#39495207)

Wow, I like the way my comment was quickly up-modded to +4 Interesting and has been dropping ever since.

For what it's worth, I don't really think the guy is a "hero" (quite). I do disagree with OP's comment, and I thought it'd be interesting (yes, I was aiming for interesting) to postulate a radically opposed viewpoint and see how well it could be supported or refuted.

Re:Scumbags (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489739)

It was the conservative party.
They are douches.

Re:Scumbags (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 2 years ago | (#39490627)

Interestingly, my first thought was to wonder whether this was done on behalf of someone running in the elections, or by an outsider trying to make a point...
Remember that not only is the Conservative party the one involved in the Robocall scandal (that did a similar thing to this in the last elections using the phone system and the electorate instead of just using the internet and a leadership election), but it's also the party that is using its possibly illegal majority to stonewall all legislation that isn't part of its agenda, and push through all of its agenda even with large protests from the people they claim to represent.

It could just be a protest against the Conservative party, or it could be an attack designed to cover up digital elections fixing (hiding such a fixing amidst the DDoS is an extremely effective method, as it becomes difficult to measure actual voter turnout and response).

Re:Scumbags (1)

dryeo (100693) | about 2 years ago | (#39491315)

One good way to win elections is to influence the oppositions leadership convention to get an unlikeable leader voted in. Fairly easy now a days with many leadership conventions open to the masses (just need to sign up ) and even easier with electronic voting.

Re:Scumbags (1)

Curtman (556920) | about 2 years ago | (#39491657)

I highly doubt the Reformacons are behind this in any official capacity. What could it possibly achieve through a DDoS? They extended the deadline several times to allow the ballots to be cast for each of the 4 rounds of voting. No real harm done other than causing a conflict with Hockey Night in Canada in the 4th round of voting.

If the real issue is that Brian Topp supporters are more likely to be hockey fans than Thomas Mulcair supporters, then lets get to the meat and potatoes of it.

It is because... (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about 2 years ago | (#39489211)

Because we all know if you disagree about a political position, it must because that side is doing something evil to want that position, so you must attack them to stop their evil.

Re:It is because... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489295)

Or any sufficiently insecure networked system ripe for the fucking, will get fucked

(I call it Butt's Law)

hmm (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489219)

Who would gain from this? Who is buddy-buddy with the Americans who have the power to do such things? hmm... *cough harper *cough

On a side note (0)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | about 2 years ago | (#39489259)

What were they thinking when they changed their name to the "New" Democratic Party? It's not the sort of name that stands the test of time, is it? 50 years from now will they still be "new"?

Re:On a side note (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489347)

New Kids on the Block seem to think so.

Re:On a side note (2)

Jose (15075) | about 2 years ago | (#39489367)

hrm, well they changed their name (in 1961) to the "New Democratic Party" from the "New Party"..they seem to like the "New" name.

Re:On a side note (1)

Guspaz (556486) | about 2 years ago | (#39490163)

The "New Party" name was an interim name they used from 1958 to 1961. The Canadian Labour Congres and Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (which, on a provincial level, formed the first socialist government in North America) merged in 1958, and used the "New Party" name until they switched to their final name, the "New Democratic Party", although I don't know why.

Re:On a side note (3, Informative)

saskboy (600063) | about 2 years ago | (#39489373)

Party names mean very little. When last were the "Republicans" major proponents of a republic?

Hearing NDP all of my life, the "new" part of the name has no literal meaning, it's all just mashed in with the rest and they are simply N-D-P. They are what they are.

Re:On a side note (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#39489645)

And the Federalists were never truly federalists (they wanted all power centralized). And Jefferson's Democrats were never really democratic (they wanted rule of law by the Constitution, especially the 10th, not simple majority). U.S. party names have never had connection to the true goals of the party.

Nor any other country (Germany's National Socialists were dictatorial). Though the UKIP seems clear in their goals (independence party wants independence).

Re:On a side note (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39491027)

Except the pirate party, Marijuana Party etc.

Re:On a side note (2)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about 2 years ago | (#39489539)

This is the first time they've managed to get anywhere politically. Previously they were just dividing the left wing and handing power to conservatives through several elections, or they were 3rd and 4th rate fiddles to the liberals, the conservatives, and the bloc quebecois (the french separatists).

They've been trying (and until this past election failing) to present themselves as the 'new left' to replace the liberals. Whether this new found success will last past one election is anyones guess.

Re:On a side note (4, Informative)

Formalin (1945560) | about 2 years ago | (#39491157)

Even though they've always been third or fourth place federally, they've still managed to get some things adopted that they implemented in provincial government - healthcare, for example.

They took 1930's poor dirt-farmer Saskatchewan and made it.. well, paved and electrified, at least, in short order.

Funny thing is, cons always run their mouths about NDP being a fiscal disaster if they ever got power, but historically, in provincial governments they've always been the most fiscally sound, rarely running deficits (our 'prudent' cons actually have the worst record). I guess it's that old line about repeating something often enough, sheep will believe it.

Re:On a side note (4, Informative)

compro01 (777531) | about 2 years ago | (#39489541)

They didn't change it. They never were the "democratic" party (There've been two of those, both in BC, both short lived and unsuccessful).

In 1958, the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation (a socialist political party formed in the 1930s) and the Canadian Labour Congress (a union federation) jointly form the National Committee for the New Party to form a new social-democratic political party. The organizations surrounding the committee took up the "New Party" bit and when the party was actually founded in 1961, they decided to just keep the "New" bit as it was already well recognized.

Newfoundland (1)

Kenshin (43036) | about 2 years ago | (#39491093)

Newfoundland was found quite a long time ago. Go ask them why they don't change the name of their province.

What makes it really interesting... (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489305)

... is that the ruling conservative party is already under investigation for illegal election tampering [www.cbc.ca] . It would seem to me that the current Canadian government is one of the most corrupt in the western hemisphere at the moment.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489615)

They're also guilty of electoral finance fraud from 2006. Happily for them they're the government, and the crown prosecutor (also the government) gave them a slap-on-the-wrist plea bargain. After the minor fine and having to repay their ill-gotten gains, they even MADE money. (compound interest over 5 years)

Re:What makes it really interesting... (1)

Bahamut_Omega (811064) | about 2 years ago | (#39490201)

Funny enough that I got bad karma from calling the prime minister Hitler version 2.0. Would love to see what happens when the money trail is traced back to the Conservatives.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489883)

... is that the ruling conservative party is already under investigation for illegal election tampering [www.cbc.ca] . It would seem to me that the current Canadian government is one of the most corrupt in the western hemisphere at the moment.

I wouldn't say they are the most corrupt it is just that since 1970 screwing around and ratfucking [wikipedia.org] have become the norm. In the states it all depends on how good you are at getting away with it, in Canada all the politicians, especially the ones with deep pockets, like Harper, hire spin doctors and American election monkey business specialists to help direct their campaigns.

  If I remember correctly Harper had one hell of a lot of support from US conservatives getting a majority. He hired several firms and ex republican gerrymandering specialists. As witness to the fact that they lost to the NDP in Quebec big time because in Quebec he is really hated and the reality is that the leadership of the PQ was screwed so Quebec just up and suddenly voted NDP. Harper knew that Quebec was a write off so less of the ratfucking went on there and the result showed that the ratfucking that they did do in Quebec along with the Liberals usual smear and monkey business completely sunk the PQ.

Elections have become little more than a media blitz circus and have very little real substance today. I would not at all be surprised if the ddos of the online voting site was done by hired guns, with conservative financial support from both Canadian and American so called political conservatives. If John A or Lincoln were alive they would puke at what has become of their political parties. The conservatives have lost their traditional base and have become little more than the playground of the rich.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (1)

compro01 (777531) | about 2 years ago | (#39490293)

I dunno about John. He wasn't above dirty tricks himself. Outright literal vote buying wasn't uncommon in his time (secret ballots weren't used until Mackenzie was PM), and there's the whole CPR thing.

Though he'd likely have less than complimentary things to say about the competence of the current governing party.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39495307)

... is that the ruling conservative party is already under investigation for illegal election tampering [www.cbc.ca] . It would seem to me that the current Canadian government is one of the most corrupt in the western hemisphere at the moment.

I wouldn't say they are the most corrupt it is just that since 1970 screwing around and ratfucking [wikipedia.org] have become the norm. In the states it all depends on how good you are at getting away with it, in Canada all the politicians, especially the ones with deep pockets, like Harper, hire spin doctors and American election monkey business specialists to help direct their campaigns.

  If I remember correctly Harper had one hell of a lot of support from US conservatives getting a majority. He hired several firms and ex republican gerrymandering specialists. As witness to the fact that they lost to the NDP in Quebec big time because in Quebec he is really hated and the reality is that the leadership of the PQ was screwed so Quebec just up and suddenly voted NDP. Harper knew that Quebec was a write off so less of the ratfucking went on there and the result showed that the ratfucking that they did do in Quebec along with the Liberals usual smear and monkey business completely sunk the PQ.

Elections have become little more than a media blitz circus and have very little real substance today. I would not at all be surprised if the ddos of the online voting site was done by hired guns, with conservative financial support from both Canadian and American so called political conservatives. If John A or Lincoln were alive they would puke at what has become of their political parties. The conservatives have lost their traditional base and have become little more than the playground of the rich.

yes.... but no... the PQ is a provincial party NOT a federal party... I imagine you mean the Bloc when you talk about PQ....If you want to seem like you know what you are talking about, it helps when you can at least get the basic facts right.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (5, Interesting)

whisper_jeff (680366) | about 2 years ago | (#39489927)

It would seem to me that the current Canadian government is one of the most corrupt in the western hemisphere at the moment.

As a proud Canadian, normally I would be outraged by a comment like that. Unfortunately, with what the Conservative party has done (manipulating the previous election) and what Harper has been doing (the list is so damn long...), I find myself entirely unable to argue against that claim... It's disgusting that I can't argue against it...

Re:What makes it really interesting... (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 2 years ago | (#39490179)

It would seem to me that the current Canadian government is one of the most corrupt in the western hemisphere at the moment.

As a proud Canadian, normally I would be outraged by a comment like that. Unfortunately, with what the Conservative party has done (manipulating the previous election) and what Harper has been doing (the list is so damn long...), I find myself entirely unable to argue against that claim... It's disgusting that I can't argue against it...

I think the closest you can come would be a comparison to the Russian elections that happened recently, to which Russians are disputing the results, and to which the Harper Government has sent election officials to "monitor" the election.

This could very well turn into something like that if it got out - "you think those Russians elections were fixed, you should've seen the Canadian one! At least the Russians know the electrion was certainly fixed!" sort of joke.

Or even worse, one of the corrupt countries simply ejects Canadian election officials monitoring their elections over corruption.

Re:Our Canadian Officials weren't monitoring... (1)

Phrogman (80473) | about 2 years ago | (#39491487)

the Russian election to see how it was corrupted, they were likely taking notes... :(

IMHO I think we need a new Federal election in Canada, monitored by outside observers. It might not make any difference to who ends up in charge but perhaps we could have a legitimate government in power instead of our current one.

Conservatives are fascists (1)

kawabago (551139) | about 2 years ago | (#39491341)

The Conservatives have always been fascists, now they are willing to show their spots. There is nothing they won't do to cling to power. Do I see political refugee Canadians on the horizon?

Re:What makes it really interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39492999)

In case any fellow Canadians are interested, there's a petition you can sign. (It might at least serve to count the number of people outraged with our current dictatorship.)

http://www.change.org/petitions/the-right-honourable-david-johnston-governor-general-of-canada-dissolve-parliament-call-for-a-full-election

Re:What makes it really interesting... (3, Insightful)

Jazari (2006634) | about 2 years ago | (#39489941)

Talk about flamebait. So far the investigation points to one young guy, and not even the opposition is accusing any government/party officials of any wrongdoing.

Political discourse would be a lot more civil if people didn't throw around baseless accusations.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 2 years ago | (#39490731)

Indeed. As a reference for how it should really be done, look back to the Conservative's last election campaign. Instead of baseless accusations, they used innuendo, baseless questioning, and true accusations with baseless conclusions. All legal, all political.

The opposition (NDP) got where they are today by NOT doing those things -- Canadians got fed up with all the mud slinging and decided that no matter how inept the other guy might be, at least he was less corrupt (in morality, if not in political dealings).

I long for the days when Canadians will drop all this party leader nonsense and go back to Canadian Politics how they were supposed to be: vote for the local representative who you feel would best represent you in Parliament.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (2)

quacking duck (607555) | about 2 years ago | (#39491163)

Where I come from, that's called being thrown under a bus.

The idea that "one young guy" has the ability to:
- set up robocalls in multiple ridings (voting districts) to mislead Liberal or at least non-Conservative voters to nonexistent voting stations
- making live harassing calls at odd hours that claim to be from Liberal supporters
- access to results of calls to determine voting intentions, to target non-Con voters
- authorize payments to Racknine to do all the robocalls, and direct them to set up a burn number belonging to "Pierre Poutine" ... and other things I haven't bothered listing, is beyond belief. There were definitely more players involved in this disgusting violation of our democratic rights.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (1)

DarthVain (724186) | about 2 years ago | (#39513101)

So you actually believe the Conservative's argument that is was all the doing of a 23 year old intern who somehow got a hold of the secure voters database, and then orchestrated on a national level hundreds of thousands of robo-calls through 3rd party services.

That kid is talented.

When he gets out of jail someone should hire him, talk about resourceful!

Re:What makes it really interesting... (1)

Idetuxs (2456206) | about 2 years ago | (#39489979)

+Informative.

Don't know much about Canada and their government but I'm sure that if you look a little more south you would be shocked about corruption around there.
Electronic voting? That's like pissing the only one thing that intends to make the system democratic.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (2)

Guspaz (556486) | about 2 years ago | (#39490283)

Canada does not use electronic voting on a federal level, and has no plans to move to such. Federal voting is controlled by Elections Canada, which has an extremely efficient paper-ballot based system with human counters that somehow manages to produces election results in a fraction the time of the US. Provincial-level and municipal-level voting is controlled by respective provinces (in the case of municipalities, they often can control their own voting subject to provincial regulations), and they're free to do as they like.

For Quebec's part, we tried electronic voting in our municipal elections in 2005 (all cities have their elections on the same day since it's province-run), and it was a disaster. Since then, the province banned electronic voting, and there are no plans to re-instate it.

In this case, it was elections for the leader of a political party, which is, as far as I know, not a regulated thing. I believe parties can pick their leaders however they like. Personally, I favour gladiator combat.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (1)

Idetuxs (2456206) | about 2 years ago | (#39537531)

Thanks to clarify that, I obviously missed something important. But as you added information I'll do it to.

In my country elections for the leader of a political party are regulated, those elections are known as " Internal elections" (Duh) and take place depending if elections are for Province or Nation. It's like this partys are subdivided in... let's say two partys, which their aim in politics it's the same (they are both socialist for example) but differ in some aspects. This is what for this elections are, everyone (not only political from party) vote, the same as they where regular voting. Once this elections finalize, there are less conflicts in partys so they have a clear leader and they go for all to the defining elections for Province or Nation, whatever it is.

This elections are regulated the same as you say. But what I do not know (TFA doesn't mention) if in those elections in Canada for their party leader, everyone can vote or only their members. In my opinion, that's relevant, but either case that's not regulated so its okay that they did it electronically.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | about 2 years ago | (#39491389)

Convictions please? no? Free country, right to due process and innocent until proven guilty.

Take your FUD away until someone gets convicted.

Re:What makes it really interesting... (1)

mrmeval (662166) | about 2 years ago | (#39491399)

Since it's anonymous it could one of the following. I'm not being facetious it is a fact of any conspiracy without hard evidence.
1) Your bestest fan so you can appear righteous in the face of great travails.
2) Your bestest enemy (all of them)
3) Some random asshole
4) Someone targeting it because they hate electronic voting
5) Someone targeting it because they love secure electronic voting

etc

It purely sucks and Occam's razor is pretty dull in this context.

Re:Parent is libelous in the extreme (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39492067)

The Conservative party is not being investigated for any actions. There is currently an investigation underway by Elections Canada to see if ANY voter misdirection happened at all, and by who (no action has been positively linked to any individual or organization).

Recently Elections Canada tossed out over 30,000 bogus complaints it was flooded with from opposition affiliated groups. They are currently investigating 700 "which may have merit".

Despite the media blowing this scandal up, I have yet to see them produce a single person who was denied a vote.

If someone gave up and didn't vote (5, Insightful)

davidwr (791652) | about 2 years ago | (#39489309)

Then the integrity of the election is affected even if the integrity of the ballot box is not.

It's like if protesters blocking the streets make some voters "give up" on voting before they arrive at the polls. The ballot box's integrity is intact, but the election loses integrity.

We can only hope that the loss of integrity was spread around evenly so the winners and vote-percentages of the losers are the same as they would have been. We can only hope, we can never know for certain.

Make it longer (0)

Hentes (2461350) | about 2 years ago | (#39489327)

Start the vote a day or two earlier to offset the delays caused by possible attacks, it's not like voting requires realtime access.

Re:Make it longer (3, Informative)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about 2 years ago | (#39489587)

Uh... it does in this case.

They started with I think 6 candidates. A couple dropped out in the first round, some more in the second until it was just two candidates.

Even though everyone knew well in advance who 3 of the candidates were going to be, and you could reasonably guess the top 2, the process is an elimination rounds system until one person got a majority (of party voters).

Basically every couple of hours was another round of voting, and the idea was to engage all the NDP membership even if they didn't want to fly to a convention. Until you actually know who's running, especially in each round, you can't vote effectively in advance. Some people did, not being NDP I'm not sure exactly how that process worked, but the idea was to see how it worked with people voting real time.

Also, it didn't matter if it was gummed up, because the NDP have no political power (the conservatives have a majority), and they won't have to run in an election for at least 3 years so there's there's time to find a better leader if they don't like the one chosen or, lets face it, 3 years is a long time, they may have to do this again several times for any number of reasons.

Re:Make it longer (3, Interesting)

Lev13than (581686) | about 2 years ago | (#39489741)

"Until you actually know who's running, especially in each round, you can't vote effectively in advance. Some people did, not being NDP I'm not sure exactly how that process worked, but the idea was to see how it worked with people voting real time."

Advance voting was done via preferential ballot. You rank everyone in order of preference. If your first place candidate gets eliminated, your vote shifts to the next person still in the running.

It turns out that 85% of the votes cast were advanced ballots, so the people logging in to vote round round by round or who voted in person at the convention had a very limited ability to change the outcome.

Outsourced I.T. Provider blaming DDoS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489337)

I wonder if the off-shore I.T. provider provided a low-quality product which simply did not function as expected. Perhaps they are using 'DDoS' as an excuse to simply deflect the blame off their own poor service.

Nice to see the Canadian government choosing off-shore I.T. instead of domestic...ugh.

Re:Outsourced I.T. Provider blaming DDoS? (1)

konadelux (968206) | about 2 years ago | (#39490187)

To be fair, it was an opposition political party who chose the off-shore IT, not the Government. Not sure that makes it any better though.

Anonymous videos a threat to democracy (2)

RichMan (8097) | about 2 years ago | (#39489371)

All this while the august house of Parliament debates in committee if nasty YouTube video is a threat to the democracy.

Money is okay, but please don't annonymously make threats to release the truth, it upsets the process.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2012/03/27/pol-vic-toews-anonymous.html

The procedure and House affairs committee is looking into threats posted on Youtube where a group called Anonymous promised to release personal information about Toews and his family if he didn't scrap Bill C-30, known as the lawful access or online surveillance bill.

Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (2, Interesting)

saskboy (600063) | about 2 years ago | (#39489481)

Believe it or not, despite this being a big political scandal, there is an even bigger one unfolding in Canada. This other one could make Watergate look minor. Actual Watergate criminals have expressed shock at how big RoboCon could be.

Some group conspired during the last Canadian general election to place (hundreds of?) thousands of misleading and/or harrassing phone calls to members of the Liberals and NDP predominantly, to suppress their votes. The Conservative Party was the benefactor of this plot, obtaining a majority government in our Parliament, giving the Prime Minister nearly unchecked power for 5 years. It's been calculated by a professor and independent researcher, LaRue, from Quebec [unfuckwithable.ca] (now living Stateside), that the Robocalls may have affected the outcome in as many as 18 ridings (12 gave the Conservatives a majority).

I've spoken with LaRue, and I trust his findings. His other unreleased allegations are also huge. I'm not exaggerating. I think he's ahead of the RCMP and Elections Canada in their own respective investigations.

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (1)

Jazari (2006634) | about 2 years ago | (#39489987)

Elections Canada has so far identified only one "riding" (district) where many robo-calls were placed, and this riding was won decisively by the Liberals. So far, it is estimated by independent media that exactly -zero- ridings were swung either way. But don't let the facts get in the way of your opinions.

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39490125)

Who needs experts when you have "independent media"

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39490153)

The issue isn't about if this led one party to win over an other, it's an issue that it could have. You can go to jail for attempted murder. You failed to kill your target, but you will go to jail. Just the same, that the robocall scheme worked or not is irrelevant, in the riding were this was shown to be a big problem, new elections should be called. Parallel to this, the people responsible have to face very hard consequences, and I don't believe that this was a lone Conservative worker who threw himself under the bus.

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (1)

saskboy (600063) | about 2 years ago | (#39498561)

You are completely right. It's unlikely that Sona had much, if anything, to do with Poutine's portion of the plot in Guelph. He apparently didn't have the technical skills to make a robocall even.

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (1)

konadelux (968206) | about 2 years ago | (#39490167)

That may be the case, but it's also not the point. If anyone was denied the ability to vote by someone acting maliciously, that's a big deal regardless of the outcome. All the more so if it was a coordinated effort by a group of people.

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39490927)

no, the scandal started with one riding in guelph. it has since exploded into about two dozen riding. www2.macleans.ca/2012/03/16/pierre-poutine-goes-provincewide/

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (1)

msobkow (48369) | about 2 years ago | (#39492761)

What "independent media"?

There's no shortage of news about the 30-odd ridings affected from the MAINSTREAM media of ALL stripes, including some rather die-hard Conservative supporting papers.

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (1)

saskboy (600063) | about 2 years ago | (#39498539)

If you wait for Elections Canada to give you news, you're going to be waiting a lonnng time. The reason we all know about it now is because the Ottawa Citizen broke the story after obtaining EC documents through the Freedom of Information Act. It's been widely reported and known that these calls affected close to 100 ridings [sixthestate.net] . Just because there's an investigation, doesn't mean we have to play dumb until it's finished.

Independent media has said more than 0 ridings were swung, but the fact remains that the crime existed even if no voters were swayed by the ruse. Facts are on my side, not yours.

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (1)

Guspaz (556486) | about 2 years ago | (#39490327)

While the robocalling scandal is indeed a big issue, I don't think that a Miami DJ is the best source of credible information on the topic.

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (1)

saskboy (600063) | about 2 years ago | (#39498617)

Wow. What an ignorant, close minded, book-by-the-cover thing to say.

So, if someone understands hip-hop, they can't comprehend research, journalism, computer databases, cryptanalysis, or politics?

I do have to confess to at first not checking him out very closely a month ago when I saw his web address unfuckwithable.ca, but when he predicted the Danforth byelection to fractions of a percent, it's pretty clear he knows what he's talking about (and you're being a snob).

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39490759)

Holy Hyperbole Batman!

They aren't even sure yet if ONE RIDING was affected, let alone 18.

Grab a grip!

Re:Tip of the Scummy Iceberg (1)

saskboy (600063) | about 2 years ago | (#39498687)

Who is "they"? You, and your friends are behind in this scandal, significantly.

  It's too bad you posted as AC, because as the months tick by, you won't be very proud of your (already outdated) prediction, while I'm confident I'll be proud of mine after that amount of time.

Completely made up scandal... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39491859)

If this really affected as many people as some claim, why wasn't this HUGE news on...Election night! You'd think thousands of people being misdirected from polling stations across the Country might have been picked up by atleast one of the major news organizations?

Re:Completely made up concern... (1)

saskboy (600063) | about 2 years ago | (#39498841)

"You'd think thousands of people being misdirected from polling stations across the Country might have been picked up by atleast one of the major news organizations"

At least one? Try these examples [blogspot.ca] .

So, that invalidates your claim that it's made up recently. Any other questions you'd like me to demolish/answer for you?

Blame: +4, Unhelpful (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39489687)

China ? North Korea? Richard Clarke?

Yours In Minsk,
K. Trout, C.I.O.

Slashdotted themselves? (1)

tomhath (637240) | about 2 years ago | (#39489909)

FTA:

About 11,000 NDP members were voting live, as opposed to advance voting.

And the DDOS attack was from "over 10,000 machines". Hmmm.

e-voting (1)

Jazari (2006634) | about 2 years ago | (#39490043)

This episode should serve as a reminder/proof that we should stick to good old fashioned paper based voting for as long as we can. Besides the fact that it's easier to run attacks on e-voting, there is also the nagging doubt that will always linger about the results when the count is close (ie: can you really be sure the algorithms weren't tampered with?)

What rhymes with Rogue Conservative Staffer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39490123)

Let me guess what the future holds. A rogue conservative staffer, probably named Pierre Poutine, will be responsible.

"Political Party"? (1)

hackwrench (573697) | about 2 years ago | (#39490479)

What's the point of saying "Political Party" in the topic as if it was novel for a political pary's website to be under attack, when what's unique here is which one?

Why are they electing idiots? (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about 2 years ago | (#39490817)

(A) Anybody who thinks an electronic voting system is viable and secure today is obviously an idiot.

(B) The people running for election obviously think electronic voting is a good thing.

(C) = (A) AND (B): Therefore, only idiots are running for office.

--
"There are two parties: "The Stupid Party and the Evil Party. Once in a while they get together and do something that is Stupid AND Evil. This is called 'bipartisanship'." -- Thomas E. Woods
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