Sequoia's 'proprietary' source code now available on the Internet
ALSO: Company yet to come clean to federal investigators, election officials, public about Chavez-tied Venezuelan firm's ownership of vote machine Intellectual Property...
By Brad Friedman on 10/20/2009, 3:49pm PT  

Paging the E-Voting Geek Squad!

Following public records requests in Riverside County, CA, the Election Defense Alliance has received a public copy of code used to program a recent election on an e-voting system made by Sequoia Voting Systems, Inc.

The result is a first-of-its kind public examination of such code, as now underway on a wiki page called the "Sequoia Voting System Study Project" which was created by the group this week.

"For the first time ever, the internal guts of a modern voting system will be publicly examined in a collaborative, open fashion," the page explains before explaining that the code, prior to being released, was first given to Sequoia by Riverside County to strip out whatever they regarded as proprietary information.

"As near as we can tell," the wiki page notes, "instead of stripping out proprietary stuff of any sort, Sequoia simply committed vandalism: they stripped the Microsoft SQL header data off the top, expecting that this would ruin access to the data under any possible database utility, making the contents unreadable."

But according to project participant Jim March --- a long time citizen e-voting watchdog and inveterate software geek --- Sequoia didn't succeed...

"We have Sequoia source code here, free and clear and legal to download, take apart and *openly* discuss," he told The BRAD BLOG, "no NDAs, no arguments that it's 'stolen,' no nothing. Sequoia gave it to us via public records, assuming they'd successfully sabotaged it. Ooops. Not well enough."

We could tell ya more, but the real geeks actually interested and able to dig into this project can get far more over at the wiki site, so please have at it and let us know when you've made heads or tails of things so we can call for an arrest warrant for Sequoia company President Jack Blaine!

Blaine, who The BRAD BLOG readers may recall, is Sequoia's CEO. As we reported in in what we considered to be an extremely explosive investigative report last year, we caught him on a company-wide conference call to employees --- convened in response to another one of our exclusive investigative reports, which broke the news that the nearly-bankrupt company was on the verge of a hostile takeover by another voting machine company --- admitting that his company doesn't even own the intellectual property (IP) rights to their own voting systems as they have long been pretending.

Rather, those IP rights, for machines used across the U.S. electoral landscape, still belong to Smartmatic, a Venezuelan firm tied to Hugo Chavez. Sequoia had previously told federal investigators from the U.S. Treasury Department's Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) that they had divested the Venezuelan-based firm. But, they didn't. They lied. And Blaine continues to lie to local election officials about it, as we detailed in our May 2008 exclusive which nobody in the corporate MSM subsequently bothered to cover.

Those machines and their secret software are still in use today, and now, after years of trying, may finally receive at least a partial examination from the public who is forced to use them in their own public elections.

The BRAD BLOG covers your electoral system fiercely and independently, like no other media outlet in the nation. Please support our work with a donation to help us keep going (Snail mail, more options here). If you like, we'll send you some great, award-winning election integrity documentary films in return! Details right here...
Share article...