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Improve Vocabulary (2 August 2017): Voting Machine Flaw Exposed in the US.

This extract is copied from the Wall Street Journal. Please visit the WSJ website for more information.

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A touch-screen voting machine used in a 2014 election in Virginia was hacked in about 100 minutes by exploiting a Windows XP flaw that was more than a decade old as part of a demonstration on security vulnerabilities in election technology.

Hack: To get into someone else’s computer system without permission.

Flaw: A mistake, fault or weakness.

Vulnerable: Easily hurt or attacked or influenced.

The hacker was Carsten SchuÌrmann, an associate professor at IT University of Copenhagen. He was one of the computer hackers invited to the Defcon convention in Las Vegas to test the security and integrity of common pieces of voting technology, many of which were purchased more than a decade ago and are rapidly becoming obsolete.

Obsolete: Not in use anymore.

Within hours of the doors opening Friday at the Voting Machine Hacking Village, hackers penetrated the WinVote voting machine and gained access to an electronic poll book, the kind used to check in voters at thousands of polling places across the country. Microsoft Corp., which made the Windows XP operating system, declined to comment.

Penetrate: To move deeply into something.

They also penetrated the hardware and firmware of a kind of touch-screen voting machine used in hundreds of jurisdictions across the country.

Firmware: A software (computer program) that is used to communicate with a computer.

Jurisdiction: A territory or a sphere under a legal authority.

Words learned today:

  1. Hack
  2. Flaw
  3. Vulnerable
  4. Obsolete
  5. Penetrate
  6. Firmware
  7. Jurisdiction

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