In 2016, people are increasingly doing everything online. Dating has moved to Tinder, your bank is now a smartphone app, and schoolyard bullies are basically giving virtual wedgies. In that respect, it may seem odd online voting hasn’t become ubiquitous; however, a new report shows that electronic voting is fraught with problems. According to the report, released this week by a trio of nonprofit organizations—the Verified Voting Foundation, the Electronic Privacy Information Center, and Common Cause—online voting systems necessarily create a link between a voter and his or ballot. That link runs counter to the system of secret ballots the United States has almost universally employed for well over a century. Entitled Secret Ballot At Risk: Recommendations for Protecting Democracy, the report notes that 32 states, along with the District of Columbia, employ some form of online voting. Only Alaska allows all of its citizens to vote online; most other states restrict the privilege to active U.S. service members stationed overseas.
“Because of current technological limitations, and the unique challenges of running public elections, it is impossible to maintain separation of voters’ identities from their votes when Internet voting is used,” the report charges. “The authors believe that Internet voting creates a second-class system for some voters – one in which their votes may not be private and their ballots may be altered without their knowledge.”
… Concerns about ballot secrecy are not the only hesitation shared by experts. In fact, the most commonly voiced concerns have to do with the ability to secure online voting systems against cyberattacks. The fear is that by installing malware on users’ devices or intercepting virtual ballots in transit to the online voting system’s servers, hackers could change votes on a massive scale, and the attack would likely be undetectable.
“The technology is just too insecure to entrust such an important right of American people to that insecure technology,” said Bruce McConnell, global vice president and cyberspace program manager at the EastWest Institute and former deputy under secretary for cybersecurity at the Department of Homeland Security, told the Daily Dot.
Full Article: Report: Online Voting Carries Security Risks | The Daily Dot.