Voting machines are so 20th century. Shouldn’t we able to vote on our smart phones by now? Here’s where a cornerstone of American democracy runs smack dab into the limits of computer science, say experts. Internet voting is “completely not ready for prime time. The security and reliability issues are significant,” says Marc Rotenberg, of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, a non-profit in Washington D.C. Despite that, about 3 million Americans will be eligible to vote online this election, according to Verified Voting, a non-profit that promotes election accuracy, transparency and verifiability. Most are members of the armed services who are deployed overseas. According to Dan Wallach, an expert on electronic voting system and professor of computer science at Rice University, no Internet voting systems are secure. “It turns out to be really hard to build a network system that’s hard to break into.” JPMorgan, Target and Home Depot have learned that lesson, and they have far more money and expertise available to them than local election officials, Wallach says.
… Election officials have always struggled with problems like ballot box stuffing and vote tampering. When voting is moved online, the number of points where those would want to subvert elections increases exponentially. Perhaps in recognition of that, some of the 30 or so states that allow Internet voting for service members now require them to sign a form “saying they understand that by using the system, their ballot may not be secret,” says Pamela Smith with Verified Voting.
Insecurity could make easily make a difference in some elections. Alaska, for example, allows all absentee voters to vote via the Internet. “Here’s the thing—the margin of victory in the Alaska senate race might be smaller than the number of votes returned over the Internet,” she says.
Full Article: Internet voting “not ready for prime time”.