In a buzzing and ringing world, technology has become an integral part of society, where almost anything can be done with the press of a fingertip But when voting is involved, things get a little tricky. With more than a million apps in the Google Play store and 900,000 apps in the Apple Store, users can download a variety of voting and polling apps. Several states, including Tennessee and Louisiana, have released voting apps that are free or can be purchased in the Apple and Android store for smartphones. New Hampshire is developing its own app for the midterm elections. Voters can’t cast ballots with these apps, but they can use them to find polling locations, ask for absentee ballots, look at sample ballots and more. The D.C. Board of Elections released its free app that can answer questions about the Nov. 4 election. “It’s a great trend for elections offices to be putting these kinds of tools out there. Not only does it help voters, but it can also ease some of the burden on calls coming in at busy times for finding polling places,” Pamela Smith, president of Verified Voting, said. Her group provides voting information and wants to make sure technology is adopted carefully.
Although technology continues to move forward, casting votes with mail-in ballots or voting in person won’t be the norm for a long time because apps and online voting still carry a high security risk. “Relying on votes to come through smartphones or computers to honestly represent his/her intentions is naïve, where malware is prevalent as it is,” Rep. James Langevin, D-R.I., said.
… Smith said that there are too many unsolved problems with security and privacy for votes to be managed solely electronically. “You can’t just call up an election official about the ballot you just cast to make sure they received it or make sure they got your vote correct,” Smith said. “They shouldn’t be able to answer that question because you should be able to remain anonymous when voting, and that anonymity principle is important.”