7 benefits of electronic voting
Abstract: Electronic voting promises lots of benefits to the electoral systems to include, timely delivery of elections, minimize cost for running elections, minimize coercion and votes buying in elections, eliminate. The pros and cons of internet voting become completely different when we use blockchain technology. The article we looked at listed internet voting cons as follows: election tampering, decreased efficiency and accuracy, and disenfranchisement. Through the use of blockchain technology, these cons of online voting become solved problems.
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We like to keep an open mind about the ground breaking technology we are leveraging to bring online voting to millions across the country. With a technology so new there are bound to be some challenges to what does tar mean in texting. This article takes a non-biased look at the possibility of a true digital democracy and outlines some very serious pros and cons of online voting that could either hold back or launch us forward into a new age.
Follow My Vote and our partners are working diligently each day to address some of the major challenges we face on this road to success and an open source voting system that is secure and audit-able by the masses. Political elections what channel is the saints game on directv the United States require voters to travel to the polls in person or to mail in absentee ballots.
That has resulted in elections, such as that inreceiving substantially fewer votes than TV reality shows that funny hindi messages for whatsapp online voting.
While the availability of online voting in political elections may change in the future, given the fast pace with which technology develops, right now the issue is still in debate. Perhaps the biggest pro of online voting is that it has the potential to make voting easier and more convenient. For those who have access to computers and the Internet, online voting would take little more effort than a few clicks.
This way of voting also eliminates the need for transportation, reduces or eliminates missed time at work or school, and decreases the impact of barriers such as lack of child care, illness, confusion about polling locations and long lines.
It would make voting easier and more private for those with disabilities, anxiety issues or serious medical conditions. Where there is Internet, there are viruses. The Internet is an almost incomprehensibly large network of computers, and monitoring those computers for security threats is a hefty and expensive task that cannot ever ensure percent safety.
In addition, savvy hackers could potentially find ways to rig the outcome of the elections, such as tampering with the way votes are submitted and counted or even casting votes for people who did not actually intend to vote. It can also be difficult to prove the identity of the person casting the online vote. Many people are actually unaware of the technology that could eliminate all of the cons associated with internet voting.
The pros and cons of internet voting become completely different when we use blockchain technology. The article we looked at listed internet voting cons as follows: election tampering, decreased efficiency and accuracy, and disenfranchisement. Through the use of blockchain technology, these cons of online voting become solved problems.
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Pro: Convenience Perhaps the biggest pro of online voting is that it has the potential to make voting easier and more convenient. Con: Election Tampering Where there is Internet, there are viruses. Author FollowMyVote. The Cryptoconomy: How Will it Work? United States Voting Laws In Comments 4. Anonymous Reply. James Wiltshire Reply. Bob Reply. Leave a comment Cancel reply Your email address will not be published.
Electronic voting promises lots of benefits to the electoral systems to include, timely delivery of elections, minimize cost for running elections, minimize coercion and votes buying in elections. Aug 02, · Internet voting allows people to be able to cast a vote in local elections without ever needing to leave their home or place of work. It saves them time because a physical ballot doesn’t have to be filed and it saves a community money because tallies can be generated automatically. e-Voting reduces the chances of accidental or intentional variations in vote counts by reducing poll worker direct interaction with ballots or counts. e-Voting and online voting reduce voter errors and the chances of voter fraud, increasing electoral integrity. Types of e-Voting systems.
This article will delve into the different types of electronic voting and the various security challenges that surround them. We will cover types of voting that involve electronic systems in any way, known as e-voting , as well as i-voting , which refers to voting online. A useful voting system needs to balance out a range of key features.
Security is definitely one of the most critical factors, because we want to prevent any adversaries or self-interested parties from being able to manipulate the results. We also want to ensure that the counted votes are authentic. Despite how crucial security is to the voting process, it still needs to be balanced out with other requirements.
For the final vote count to accurately represent the will of the people, the other properties that need to be considered in voting systems are:. One of the main issues is that many of these properties compete against each other. If you make the system excessively secure, it may also be too hard to use for most of the population. You could also build a system that is incredibly fast but has a high error rate. This would also be useless. The main ideas that we will be focusing on are security, verification, and anonymity.
One of the largest complications is that an anonymous vote makes it very difficult to verify whether the result is accurate or if there has been a security compromise.
Unfortunately, such a system would not be anonymous and could lead to coercion. The challenge of verifying the vote while also maintaining anonymity is one of the key stumbling blocks involved in electronic voting. Another major consideration is just how valuable elections are.
The winner of an election has a significant influence over the future of a country, its alliances, its trade, its taxes and its regulations. When you consider the amount of money and power at stake, this is a pretty big deal for other nations, major businesses and other interest groups. Foreign actors have been trying to influence the outcomes of elections in their favor for a very long time. This included targeted propaganda campaigns through social media platforms such as Facebook, hacking into political databases and strategically releasing the information, as well as attacks on voter databases and electronic voting machines themselves.
You would be right in saying that the majority of times, the security systems in place for these banks are effective and everything runs smoothly. The occasional large-scale attack may be covered by insurance or treated as a cost of business in exchange for the efficiencies that come with using online systems. Can a country afford to have its election manipulated by enemies?
What if an election was compromised and the people never found out? Given just how valuable an election can be, and the proven desire that other nations have to influence them in their own favor, we have to recognize just how significant the threat to our democracies is. This is why our election systems need such high security standards in place. There are two types, e-voting and i-voting , each of which can be implemented in a range of ways.
These variations have their own unique advantages and complications. An e-voting machine. Tally Voting by 34esmond licensed under CC0. E-voting still takes place at central polling locations, with observers overlooking the process. The difference between e-voting and paper voting is that e-voting involves using technology in any of the following processes:. Remote e-voting, also known as i-voting, uses the internet to allow people to vote from essentially anywhere.
It can be done with computers, smartphones and other devices. One of the main downsides is that many key processes occur away from the eyes of human observers, so it can be impossible to know whether or not a vote has been manipulated.
When e-voting is involved in the ballot casting process, it generally involves systems such as direct-recording electronic DRE voting machines.
These systems typically have a touchscreen display or some buttons that voters can use to choose their preference. When a person votes through the interface, their choice is recorded directly on the machine. When the election finishes, the machines total their votes and then store them on removable memory cards and as printouts. The results are then transferred to a central counting location either physically or over a local network.
There are a number of benefits to these systems. The main ones are that they s peed up the vote counting process, they make it easier for those with disabilities to vote, they can make the election process cheaper in the long run, and they can help to reduce waste.
These machines also eliminate the ambiguity of paper ballots that have been marked improperly. Despite this, they come with a number of different issues. The most significant one is how can we know whether the final result is an accurate representation of the votes that were cast? There is a common maxim in the computer security world that you can only trust software that you programmed yourself.
The above statement may seem a little extreme, but it was backed up by a decision by the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany:. This means that between one and two percent of votes may not be counted, or could go towards the incorrect party. This holds true if everyone in the electorate uses the same machines, but what if only parts of a country use voting machines, while other parts use ballot papers?
Such a hybrid system could lead to a biased result, especially if areas that favored one party used DREs, while those that prefer another used paper ballots. To confirm the accuracy of the result and that no tampering has taken place, audits need to take place before, during and after the election.
Before the election, one of the most important types of audit involves verifying that the voting machines themselves are working properly. This includes verifying the code, and making sure that the physical machine has not been altered. These are voluntary at the federal level, and whether or not they are adhered to is left for the states to decide. Most states that use electronic voting subscribe to at least some aspect of the federal certification process, although there are states like Florida which have their own certification programs.
A range of different security issues in the federal guidelines have been pointed out. While they feature some good recommendations, the guidelines also leave a number of gaping security holes and they are open to interpretation. The guidelines focus more on the technical aspects, and ignore the processes that need to be in place so that these systems can be effective.
A system that features encryption as an opt-in feature will lead to far more data breaches than one where encryption is opt-out. The guidelines also neglect important processes such as social engineering training for staff, the security of the voting machines when they are in storage, password storage protocols, and penetration testing. The lack of system-wide penetration testing presents a significant security oversight. Give us your best shot at breaking in.
If they find faults, they make recommendations on how the systems can be fixed. If systems are deployed without taking this step, the operators are essentially inviting hackers to be your penetration testers. The problems will only be found out after the hackers have breached the system and a disaster is at hand. This is why the lack of penetration testing in the guidelines is such a massive oversight.
Since the guidelines only cover the systems that record the votes and those that tabulate them, there can be glaring security holes in other electronic voting technology. Electronic voter registration systems and pollbooks systems used to review and maintain registration information — voter lookup, identification, verification, ballot and precinct assignment, etc.
Considering that voter registration systems were hacked by Russian operatives ahead of the elections , this is a serious weakness. Even with these guidelines in place, their real-world implementations leave a lot to be desired.
To avoid turning this article into a tome, the incidents are presented as brief summaries with links so that you can read about the matters in detail if you want. We will focus on security issues concerning US machines, since these are the most relevant to the guidelines that we have just discussed. There is also a long list of flaws in other countries, which have led nations such as the Netherlands to return to paper ballots.
The incidents listed above are far from an exhaustive list of examples. These and the other security flaws show that the e-voting systems that are currently used in the US are inappropriate for securing elections.
The good news is that the federal guidelines for electronic voting systems are set to be updated. On top of this, the proposed Voluntary Voting System Guidelines 2.
Just like the current version of the guidelines, they focus on technical aspects rather than procedure, which can be just as important when it comes to security.
Again, they ignore electronic voter registration systems and pollbooks, which also need to be secured. While the new guidelines do feature some positive steps, they are simply not holistic enough to provide a secure framework for elections.
We will ignore the human error and sloppy implementations that we see in practice, and instead look at how these systems could work in a best case scenario. Before an election, the code and the hardware need to be audited to make sure that the machines have not been tampered with and are free from error. The US already has a voluntary certification process, but as we have just discussed, it does not do enough to secure the election.
If we theoretically did fix the guidelines, the next issue we would have is who would audit it, and how could we trust them? The most obvious choice would be for some kind of private, community or independent government body to audit the machines and make sure that everything is implemented correctly.
But how could we trust whichever entity is responsible? The same way that we trust our banks, judges and police? The difference between this and most other trust-based scenarios that you could name, is that there is a lot more at stake in an election, so there is much greater potential for corruption. Considering how much money is at stake, and that we know that adversaries are already motivated to disrupt elections, it would be unwise to trust that such a small group of individuals could not be corrupted.
If we feel that there is too much at stake to trust a small group, then we could use election software that is open source instead. This means that the code is freely published online, and anyone can inspect it to make sure that there are no errors or indications of tampering.
At the moment, the electronic voting machine industry runs on proprietary code, meaning that no one can publicly verify whether or not the machines work as they say they do. This is obviously a huge security flaw.
How can we know that the legitimate software is actually on the voting machine in front of us? But how can voters know whether or not the machine has been tampered with after the initial inspection? A system can seem to be running normally even though it may actually be manipulating the vote. Most of these concerns apply to the central vote counting machines as well. They could be tampered with in many different ways.
On top of this, there is also the potential for the vote count to be altered while it is transmitted between local machines and the central system.