Doug Ford went into the final days of the Ontario Progressive Conservative leadership race saying the party’s voting system was “corrupted” in favour of “hand-picked elites.” Then he won the leadership, and it has been his chief opponent, Christine Elliott, who has had to reconcile with a bizarre online selection system that made Mr. Ford the winner – even though she won more than 50 per cent of the popular vote and more ridings than he did. No doubt Mr. Ford is happy with the outcome. But the truth is that the one-member, one-vote online voting system for electing party leaders, which is used by Canadian political parties at all levels, is proving to have many drawbacks.
Sierra Leone: Why you shouldn’t get carried away by Sierra Leone’s blockchain elections | Crypto-Lines
Last week Sierra Leone became the first country in the world to hold blockchain elections. They were supervised by Agora, a blockchain startup based in Switzerland. Once the voting of the region had taken place, over 400, 000 ballots were then manually fed into Agora,s blockchain. The CEO of Agora was very pleased with how smooth the process worked. He exuded excitement for the future of blockchain elections saying: “I strongly believe that this election is the beginning of a much larger blockchain voting movement.”
Canada: Doug Ford calls for Ontario PC Party leadership voting to be extended, use of paper ballots | Global News
Ontario Progressive Conservative Party leadership candidate Doug Ford is calling on the party to extend voting by a week and for the ability for members to vote by paper ballot. “As of right now, close to 100,000 people have not received their PIN number — that’s staggering,” Ford told The Andrew Lawton Show on Global News Radio 980 CFPL Monday afternoon. “I’m calling on the party to make sure that they step up to the plate, and I’m calling the other candidates for them to step up to the plate, and let’s go to the paper ballot for those who haven’t been able to vote.”
Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives will begin casting their ballots for a new leader on Friday in an online process some candidates are challenging over worries the outcome will be tainted by false memberships and vote-rigging. The campaigns of former Toronto city councillor Doug Ford and political newcomer Caroline Mulroney have flagged concerns with the team running the PC Party’s leadership contest, saying a number of fraudulent memberships could have been purchased in recent weeks with prepaid credit cards. They also say a number of party members are still waiting to receive the paperwork they need to register to vote.
Canada: P.E.I. Opposition calls for calls for electronic voting, despite security concerns | The Guardian
Opposition Leader James Aylward is calling on government to adopt electronic voting in P.E.I. for the next provincial election, in spite of concerns raised by a panel of independent auditors about the potential for serious security breaches. Aylward issued the call earlier this week via press release, saying electronic voting could be a way to revolutionize democratic accessibility and increase voter engagement. “It’s the way of the future,” he told The Guardian Thursday. … P.E.I.’s 2016 plebiscite on electoral reform was the first province-wide electronic vote ever held in Canada. Because this introduced possible new risks, an independent audit of the results was required by the province’s Plebiscites Act.
The Welsh Government has proposed pilots exploring the use of electronic voting in local elections and by-elections. Alongside providing 16 and 17-year-olds with the ability to vote on devolved matters for the first time in the UK, e-voting is aimed at boosting participation in the political process. … The security of ballot counting systems has never been a problem in the UK, where ballots are counted by hand. However, in countries such as the US and Germany, security researchers have warned that machines used to count votes could be hacked to manipulate the results – although there is no evidence of this having taken place.
With the Supreme Court’s approval, the country’s biggest database manager has started working on the development of an integrated internet voting system aimed at extending the right of franchise to over seven million Pakistanis living abroad in time for the next general elections, according to a report by a private media outlet. According to a presentation given by the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) to the apex court on Wednesday, a three-tier electronic mechanism – named the Internet Voting System for Overseas Pakistanis – will be developed at a cost of Rs150 million and within a period of four months. The ECP would provide the required funds for the project.
Latvia: Constitution Protection Bureau: e-voting to create security risks in Latvia | The Baltic Course
Introducing an electronic voting system in Latvia would create security risks, Janis Maizitis, Chief of the Constitution Protection Bureau or the top national security agency in Latvia, said on the public Latvian Radio, cites LETA. He said he was not prone to phobias but, based on the information that he knew as the head of the national security agency, he believed that it would best if Latvia kept to the existing voting procedure, using paper ballots. “That way it would be safer, and we will avoid security risks,” Maizitis said.
Tallinn Administrative Court on Thursday rejected an appeal by ID card manufacturer Gemalto AG against Estonia’s Police and Border Guard Board (PPA), which will allow the latter to continue with preparations for the manufacture of new electronic ID cards. “Today’s decision by Tallinn Administrative Court not to satisfy the complaint of Gemalto AG regarding the procurement procedure for the contract to manufacture ID cards means certainty for the PPA that we can move forward with preparations for the fulfilment of the agreement on the manufacture of ID-cards concluded in spring,” said Margit Ratnik, head of the Development Department of the PPA. The police authority is planning to begin issuing electronic ID cards with new security elements and a new design, manufactured by the company Idemia, in fall 2018.
Finland should not consider setting up an online voting system for its elections just yet, according to a Justice Ministry working group. The risks in doing so at this point are much higher than benefits that e-voting might bring, they said. Some risks the group identified in an online e-voting system include: widespread manipulation of election results, disruption of elections through denial of service attacks and the potential for the loss of voter anonymity through hacks or other methods. The working group said that while current technology is not yet advanced enough, further development of e-voting technologies could bring new opportunities down the road. The basic tech to set up an online voting system for elections is possible today. For example, Finland’s nearby Baltic neighbour Estonia has utilised e-voting for longer than a decade now. According to the country’s website e-estonia.com, some 30 percent of the Estonian electorate voted through online services in their last elections.