by Dr. Andy Jackson
Director of the Civitas Center for Public Integrity, John Locke Foundation
The Watauga County Board of Elections (BOE) removed modems from 29 ballot scanners. In a statement noting the removal, they say that the modems were never used. That is part of an effort to remove modems in six North Carolina counties:
On November 9, 2021, Karen Brinson Bell, the Executive Director of the North Carolina State Board of Elections, hosted a Microsoft Teams meeting with election staff from the six counties that still use M100 ballot scanners, including Watauga.
Director Bell informed them that Printelect would be undertaking annual preventative maintenance and would remove any modems found in the machines.
The Watauga BOE said that the modems had never been used. Under General Statute 163-165.7.(J) “No voting system used in any election in this State shall be connected to a network, and any feature allowing connection to a network shall be disabled.”
The report does not mention what other voting machines in North Carolina currently have modems.