by Zero Hedge

An election assessment conducted in a Pennsylvania county months ago and quietly released to the public in recent weeks uncovered five errors, including three linked to Dominion Voting Systems, whose election management system is used in the county, the assessing firm said.

Wake Technology Services Inc. (Wake TSI), a Pennsylvania-based firm, conducted the assessment in Fulton County. Workers visited the county’s offices late last year and about a month later, on Feb. 9.

The assessment was meant to review the mail-in ballots in the county and explore whether conduct relating to absentee ballot requests, distribution, receipt, and counting were in line with federal and commonwealth guidelines, Wake TSI said in the 93-page report that was quietly published on the county’s website, with no public fanfare, in May.

Wake TSI personnel did not conduct a technology forensic audit of the operating system or election management system (EMS) but did review some system file dates, log files, ballot images, and other files.

Wake TSI said in its report summary that it found that the election “was well run, was conducted in a diligent and effective manner and followed the directions of Pennsylvania.” No anomalies were reported during the election process and expectations were that the assessment would not show any indications of fraud, error, interference, or misconduct.

However, Wake TSI said it found five “issues of note,” including that Dominion failed to meet the commonwealth’s certification standards; that the election management system had Microsoft SQL Server Data Tools installed, despite the software not being part of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission’s certified configuration; and that changes were made to the management system just three weeks prior to the election.

Assessors said there is “no valid reason” for the software to be installed on the system and that the presence “allows any user with access to change and manipulate the EMS databases without logging [recording] to the Database, EMS, or [operating system] logfiles.”

They also said that Dominion failed to fill out a document that attests that the installed software versions conformed with certified reasons, with Dominion apparently claiming filling out the form was “optional.”

Dominion Voting Systems disputed the report’s findings related to it.

The Microsoft software “is a federally-certified component of Dominion’s system, which meets U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) Voluntary Voting System Guidelines,” a spokesperson said in an email, adding: “Only federal and state entities have the authority to certify voting machines. Dominion’s systems have been certified by both the U.S. EAC and the State of Pennsylvania.”

A search of the voluntary guidelines did not turn up any mention of Microsoft SQL Server Data Tools, which can be used to create, debug, maintain, and rewrite the source code of a database.

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