Fact Check: 'Poll Pads' Used In Dallas Are NOT Using Outdated Software Version

Fact Check

  • by: Alexis Tereszcuk

STORY UPDATED: check for updates below.

Fact Check: 'Poll Pads' Used In Dallas Are NOT Using Outdated Software Version It's Certified

Are the ExpressPoll pollbook devices used in Dallas County for the 2022 general election operating on out-of-date software? No, that's not true: ExpressPoll Version 7.2.3.0, the up-to-date version, was certified by the Texas Secretary of State's office in May 2022, its spokesperson Sam Taylor confirmed to Lead Stories. "Dallas County would not have been able to use them if they had not been certified," he said.

The claim appeared in an article published by Gateway Pundit on November 15, 2022, titled "LeadStories 'Fact Check' on Poll Pads in Texas Adding Votes Debunked" (archived here). It opened:

Over the weekend, The Gateway Pundit shared exclusive video that was obtained from poll workers in Dallas County, Texas. This video shows voters randomly being added to the ExpressPoll poll pads with "POLLS CLOSED" clearly displayed on the screen. In the background, you can hear other poll workers discussing their poll pads. The poll pads ...

This is what the article looked like on the website at the time of writing:

LeadStories "Fact Check" on Poll Pads in Texas Adding Votes Debunked

Over the weekend, The Gateway Pundit shared exclusive video that was obtained from poll workers in Dallas County, Texas. This video shows voters randomly being added to the ExpressPoll poll pads with "POLLS CLOSED" clearly displayed on the screen. In the background, you can hear other poll workers discussing their poll pads. The poll pads ...

The article, which incorrectly called them "pollpads" (the brand name for a device not used in Dallas) claimed:

The Texas Secretary of State website does have a certification for the ExpressPoll pollbooks, however, the version that was certified is significantly out of date. The certification record is for version 7.1.3.1 while the version in use is 7.2.3.0. Anyone in cyber security will attest to how significant that difference can be. We have reached out to ES&S for their updated certifications and will amend the article as necessary if they respond.

Taylor told Lead Stories via email on November 15, 2022, that "version 7.2.3.0 has, in fact, been certified by our office." He said they are in the process of updating the certification records website but "Dallas County would not have been able to use them if they had not been certified."

Lead Stories was provided a PDF of a letter dated May 31, 2022, sent to Election Systems & Software by Keith Ingram, director of elections for the Texas Secretary of State, and he confirmed that the office "formally approve[s] the certification of the ES&S ExpressPoll 7.2.3.0 system for use in Texas elections." It reads:

Pursuant to our authority to certify electronic pollbook systems under Election Code 31.014, we have reviewed your request for certification of the ES&S ExpressPoll 7.2.3.0 system.

Our office has reviewed your application materials, the testing lab report from Pro V&V showing completion of the Texas Technical Matrix for Electronic Pollbooks, and the completed Texas Functional Matrix for Electronic Pollbooks completed by the examiners from our office. Having
reviewed those materials, we have concluded that your system meets the requirements for certification of an electronic pollbook system.

We therefore formally approve the certification of the ES&S ExpressPoll 7.2.3.0 system for use in Texas elections.

Here's an embedded copy of the letter:

The Dallas County Elections Department confirmed to Lead Stories via email on November 16, 2022, that the ES&S ExpressPoll 7.2.3.0 system was "certified back in May 2022."

Katina Granger, senior manager of public relations for Electronic Systems & Software, confirmed to Lead Stories via email on November 16, 2022, that "Dallas County uses ExpressPoll version 7.2.3.0., which was certified by the State of Texas Elections Division on May 31, 2022. It is the most up-to-date version to be certified for use in Texas."

Texas Secretary of State John B. Scott released a series of videos about the election process in the state and spoke about the certification process. At 1:03 in a video titled, "SOS 101: Voting Systems in Texas," he said:

In Texas, we have even higher standards for our voting systems, which must be certified for our office, in conjunction with computer science experts and legal experts at the Texas Attorney General's office. All voting systems in Texas have to be certified by our agency in order for your county election office to purchase them and use them in any election.


Gateway Pundit is incorrectly using the term "poll pads" in their article. As Lead Stories previously reported, "poll pads" are a branded product by the company KNOWiNK , does not have contracts or do any business in Dallas.

Lead Stories reached out to Dallas County Elections and will update the story when a response is received.

Updates:

  • 2022-11-16T17:52:33Z 2022-11-16T17:52:33Z
    Adds statements from the Dallas County Elections Department and Electronic Systems & Software.

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  Alexis Tereszcuk

Alexis Tereszcuk is a writer and fact checker at Lead Stories and an award-winning journalist who spent over a decade breaking hard news and celebrity scoop with RadarOnline and Us Weekly.

As the Entertainment Editor, she investigated Hollywood stories and conducted interviews with A-list celebrities and reality stars.  

Alexis’ crime reporting earned her spots as a contributor on the Nancy Grace show, CNN, Fox News and Entertainment Tonight, among others.

Read more about or contact Alexis Tereszcuk

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