While the country is probably still a long way from online voting, some states are testing the waters and building technology into election-related processes. For the 2016 presidential election, Ohio will incorporate a common data format in its election management systems that will help election officials quickly and accurately collect election data from precincts with non-interoperable election management systems, and then quickly release that information to the public and news outlets. It’s hoped that the common formats will reduce the opportunities for error on election nights, when deadlines are tight and pressure for results is keen. Ohio’s changes are based on the methods outlined in the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s special publication: A Common Data Format for Election Results Reporting. … Many believe that no matter how strong companies like Smartmatic make their security, it’s impossible to secure votes across the hardware and networks that would make up an electronic voting system.
Email voting is vulnerable to attack because email headers can be easily forged, email does not use end-to-end encryption and it does not offer reliable authentication methods, according to David Jefferson, computer scientist in the Lawrence Livermore’s Center for Applied Scientific Computing who has studied electronic voting and security for more than 15 years. Emails can also be manipulated in transit by IT personnel who control its path. Malware can also be injected into receiving vote servers, he said.
Plus, “Internet elections are essentially impossible to audit,” Jefferson said. “The only vote records are on the server, and they are highly processed electronic ballot images that have been operated on by millions of lines of code on the client device, during transit through the Internet and on the server and canvass systems.” So far, the best models for secure Internet voting are called end-to-end auditable cryptographic protocols, and they are still in the research and development phase, he said.
Full Article: Tech tiptoes into the voting process — GCN.