Here is a hot-off-the-presses new video from Nathan Fielder, creator and star of Comedy Central’s Nathan For You. Clocking in at a brisk 13 minutes, the short investigates a simple, eponymous question: Can the Emmys be hacked? Fielder enlists Danish security expert Carsten Schürmann, who has previously demonstrated the vulnerability of American election technology, to demonstrate how hypothetical hackers might hypothetically hack the Emmys’ voting system to swing Nathan For You some nominations and/or wins.
Turns out, those hypothetical hackers might have a pretty easy time of it. As Schürmann shows, not only is it fairly simple to set up a dummy voting website and phish Emmy voters’ login credentials, but it’s even possible—nay, straightforward—to replicate the actual Emmys voting page’s two-factor authentication system. What Schürmann ultimately concludes, with a deadpan that gives Fielder’s a run for its money, is that “It is extremely unlikely that you can have 100% trust in the outcome of the vote.” Unless, of course, Nathan For You takes home the win—then you know it was an honest tally.
So: Definitely do not try to hack the Emmys. But definitely do keep your eye out for phishing attacks—it’s a dangerous world out there. And if you’re an Emmy voter, maybe consider throwing a few votes Fielder’s way? The obvious contender is the season four finale “Finding Frances,” a marvelous two-hour journey into the messy intricacies of regret, longing and shame. But “The Anecdote,” which details Fielder’s insane attempt to stage a series of hijinks so he can later talk about them on Jimmy Kimmel Live, isn’t all that far away in terms of ambition. And “Andy vs. Uber,” in which Fielder helps a taxi driver blackmail Uber, only for that driver to end up working for Uber, is similarly surprising in its human content. Lots of great choices! Just, be sure not to hack anything, that would be bad.
Check out the video below, and scratch your Nathan For You itch with more of Paste’s coverage of the series right here.
Seth Simons is Paste’s assistant comedy editor. Follow him on Twitter.