Concern with electronic skulduggery is Right, Left, and Center

AP, via Yahoo: Iowa GOP worried by hacker threat to caucus vote <read>

As the article points out the particular threat may or may not be real, but as those quoted in the article point out, cyber threats to voting are real:

With two weeks remaining before Iowa kicks off the 2012 campaign with its first-in-the-nation presidential caucuses, the state Republican Party is taking steps to secure its electronic vote collection system after receiving a mysterious threat to its computers…

state authorities have not taken any actions since the call to “peacefully shut down” the caucuses does not amount to a crime, said Jim Saunders, director of the Iowa Intelligence Fusion Center at the state’s Department of Public Safety…

The GOP is also encouraging the party activists who run the precinct votes to use paper ballots instead of a show of hands, which has been the practice in some areas. The ballots would provide a backup in the event of any later confusion about the results…

Drew Ivers, chairman of Texas Rep. Ron Paul’s campaign in Iowa and a member of the state GOP central committee, said party officials and consultants will also monitor for any hacking threat using software and other methods, but added, “How do you stop a hacker? That’s the question.”…

Among the early voting states, the hacking concerns have most spooked officials in Iowa. In New Hampshire, whose primary is one week after the Iowa caucuses, officials rely on a mostly manual process that uses paper and is less vulnerable to an attack on computer systems, said Assistant Secretary of State Anthony Stevens. In South Carolina, which follows 11 days later, State Election Commission spokesman Chris Whitmire said he was not aware of any concerns.

But Douglas Jones, a computer science professor at the University of Iowa who has consulted for both political parties, said the Iowa Republican Party is right to be concerned about the security of their computer systems. The Internet, he said, is “becoming more and more like the Wild West.”

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