RealTime IT News

Diebold to Settle with California

A California court has approved a $2.6 million settlement between Diebold and the State of California and Alameda County. The state and county had sued Diebold for fraudulent claims about the security of its electronic voting machines.

Diebold, whose subsidiary Diebold Election Systems manufactures the voting machines at the heart of the suit, will pay the state $2.6 million, and Alameda County another $100,000.

The court ordered that $500,000 of the lump sum be used to help form a voter education and poll worker training program in California, coordinated through the University of California Institute of Governmental Studies.

Diebold has also agreed to certain technology and reporting obligations that will provide election officials with a better understanding of how to use its voting machines.

The settlement is the fruit of a suit filed in September by California Attorney General Bill Lockyer, who argued that Diebold was not truthful about the security and reliability of its electronic voting machines.

Lockyer, who earlier dropped a criminal probe into Diebold, claimed that Diebold provided Alameda County with software that was not certified by the government. Researchers earlier determined the machines contained dangerous flaws.

Researchers said the voting system could easily allow someone to cast multiple votes in the same election. Last April, California set stringent standards for electronic voting by ordering new security measures for e-voting machines.