back to article American software biz CEO arrested for allegedly storing election data in China

Eugene Yu, CEO of Michigan-based software firm Konnech, has been arrested at the request of the Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón, as part of an investigation into the theft or mishandling of personal information. Yu's company makes software called PollChief and has a five-year $2.9 million contract with the …

  1. Cederic Silver badge

    ah, technology

    It does feel that an awfully large number of people make a tremendous amount of money from US elections, and use technology in ways that do not feel supportive of free, fair and transparent democracy.

    I'm glad the UK General Elections remain paper based, with corruption and fraud mostly limited to postal votes and conversations about £20k in election funding here or there.

    1. NeilPost

      Re: ah, technology

      … any scrap of evidence to support any of your insinuations ??

      1. gandalfcn Silver badge

        Re: ah, technology

        Check out what the Rep. aka Trump Party has been up to and all the court cases they are involved in. They claimed massive fraud, which there wasn't, but there was fraud - by them.

        1. NeilPost

          Re: ah, technology

          https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/oct/04/us-democracy-attack-midterms-election-constitutional-crisis-2024

          … and this whilst they shout electoral shenanigans.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: ah, technology

            So... pre 2020 electronic voting machines are vulnerable or so says 3 dem senators and a rep:

            https://www.warren.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/H.I.G.%20McCarthy,%20&%20Staple%20Street%20letters.pdf

            Post 2020 they are completely secure.

            Uh huh...

            And for a Repub refusing to concede, what about Stacey Abrams?

            1. martinusher Silver badge

              Re: ah, technology

              Just BS. The voting equipment we used prior to 2020 was electronic in that it plugged into the mains and lit up but it had zero connectivity capability. Votes were tabulated at the polling site but there was a number of checks to make sure it was clean (including keeping the ballot forms).

              From 2020 all ballots were tabulated at the county facilities. Computers at the polling location were used to verify voters eligibility to vote using the county database and to operate touch screen ballot printers.

              >what about Stacey Abrams?

              You might want to explain who she is as this is a UK site. My explanation for British readers is this is a prime example of what is known here as "whataboutism".

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: ah, technology

                Stacey Abrams is the President of Earth.

                OK, so Warren et al were wrong in 2019 to claim the voting machines were vulnerable. A quick search shows that the world+dog has been worried about the security of such machines pretty much since they were introduced. Or were Warren and co correct at the time but now they are wrong due to the 2020 result? I'm really looking forward to the increase in the chocolate ration.

        2. Michael Habel

          Re: ah, technology

          Am I to believe you or my lying eyes, as they kicked all the "independent Observers outta the room, ans plastered the glass walls with cardboard so as to hide their crimes? That happened in real time, on national / international TV. So lets not say it ever happened when the Water main break that allegedly happened in Atlanta Georgia never even happened.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: ah, technology

        Any actual evidence that 2016 was stolen from Hillary as she keeps claiming?

        https://www.forbes.com/sites/adamandrzejewski/2020/12/08/dominion-voting-systems-received-120-million-from-19-states-and-133-local-governments-to-provide-election-services-2017-2019/

        https://www.westernjournal.com/government-admits-dominion-voting-machines-vulnerable-hacking-16-states/

        https://www.warren.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/H.I.G.%20McCarthy,%20&%20Staple%20Street%20letters.pdf

      3. Cederic Silver badge

        Re: ah, technology

        Of course.

        https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2010/sep/06/men-jailed-attempted-postal-vote-fraud

        https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/councillors-guilty-of-postal-votes-fraud-that-would-shame-a-banana-republic-5350422.html

        https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/11560017/Postal-voting-fraud-is-easy-electoral-commissioner-says.html

    2. Tubz Silver badge

      Re: ah, technology

      U.S free elections and free democracy are a corrupt sham and has been for 150 years+, it is down to who has the biggest wallet and most numerous braindead sheep supporting the party. The political system is barely gets anything done, as neither side rarely see common ground, even for the benefit of the population. If the founding fathers of U.S democracy, could have seen the future, they may have said, sod the revolution and stay with the crown.

    3. Michael Habel

      Re: ah, technology

      "It’s not who votes that counts, it’s who counts the votes." --Josef Stalin

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: ah, technology

        "It’s not who votes that counts, it’s, you know, the thing." --Joe Biden

        I'll get my coat...

        1. Michael Habel
          Pint

          Re: ah, technology

          thanks for that I wanted to go there, but was afraid I wouldn't get it passed the censors here.

  2. disgruntled yank

    seek and you shall find something

    "Republican donor Frederic Eshelman, who sought to recover his $2.5 million donation to the group to investigate election fraud." One could argue that he found his fraud, it's just a stretch to refer to it as election fraud.

  3. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

    Let's play ...

    ... where's my data? Konnech/Yu may have known where their data was going. Or maybe not. There are just too many forms of cross border data regulations (China, Russia, India, the EU) to really be certain that someone along the chain hasn't subcontracted with someone the shouldn't have. Unless your server is sitting under your desk, keeping your feet warm.

    You DID provide some sort of off-site backup, didn't you?

    1. Someone Else Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: Let's play ...

      Upvote for the xkcd reference. I hadn't seen that one before.

      Classic!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Let's play ...

      Far too few details published ... a problem with "the news" is that sufficiency of information is not well correlated with size or content of headlines. One would hope that there was direct evidence that Yu personally ordered or agreed to storing the data in China before he was suspected, let alone arrested. I'm inclined to believe his ethnicity played a role in his walking the perp walk - and this is most definitely a perp walk.

      For comparison, AFAIK Uber former CEO Kalanick is not being charged despite having full knowledge of and authority over the Sullivan "cover-up", and the company’s chief privacy lawyer, Clark, who also had full knowledge has immunity for informing on Sullivan.

  4. Pirate Dave Silver badge
    Pirate

    "Republican donor Frederic Eshelman, who sought to recover his $2.5 million donation to the group to investigate election fraud."

    What brain-dead moron donates $2.5 million to a barely-created group that has no history, no clout, and no political pull? I mean, regardless of feelings about the election fraud itself, how does someone who's managed to accumulate enough money that they can donate $2.5 million of it not do better due diligence before writing the check? Was this guy part of the HP team that bought Autonomy? Bizarre.

  5. martinusher Silver badge

    I would have thought Gascon was more sensible than this

    But obviously he's not. Too bad I live next door in Ventura county or I'd have the opportunity of voting him out. Honestly. I expect my politicians to either know what they're talking about or take advice from people who know. Its very fashionable to store data in "the cloud" these days but its also very difficult to know exactly where this damn cloud is. To make this a criminal offense......that's absurd (especially as Gascon is one of those spearheading the effective decriminalization of petty crimes -- get your bike stolen, your house broken into or your business robbed and you're SoL -- but there's resources aplenty to track down anonymous data storage.)

    1. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

      Re: I would have thought Gascon was more sensible than this

      Jurisdiction of data is a thing. Just because it's "in the cloud" does not mean data sovereignty issues have gone away. Storing election workers' personal data on servers in China would definitely be problematic.

  6. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Texas Attorney General, said to have close ties to the group

    If true, this is likely a massive conflict of interest and the Texas AG should be immediately removed from office. No way the AG could be impartial, and it raises obvious corruption concerns.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Alternative voting arrangements for conspiracy fans?

    1 x large piece of paper

    1 x crayon

    And

    Pictorial instructions on where to shove their ballot

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