Online Voting

In: Social Issues

Submitted By priswindy
Words 900
Pages 4
Online Voting: Good or Bad? E-voting does exist in various forms throughout the world — from electronic vote-counting of paper ballots, to actual, digital-display ballot machines — but bona fide, entirely-digital systems are incredibly rare. A handful of countries have experimented with remote, internet-based voting for expatriates and armed forces, but the only country to ever hold a fully-digital election — where anyone in the country could vote via the internet — is Estonia, which started in 2007. In 2011, 15% of Estonia’s population voted via the internet. Why is internet voting so slow to take off? Security is one aspect — after 100 years of refining the paper-and-pen approach, it’s understandable that some states would be apprehensive about switching to that terrifying, publicly-owned entity that is the internet — but as Estonia has shown, with ID cards that also act as public key encryption smart cards, it’s possible to create a secure internet voting platform.
There are also valid concerns about hardware and software tampering — a man-in-the-middle attack somewhere between the voting terminal (be it at home or at a polling station) and the end point where tabulation occurs — but these can be ameliorated by instigating a chain of custody and public, open inspection of the systems used. In short, it’s not like the US lack the ability or technology to run a secure, internet-based election. Just imagine what would happen if suddenly everyone with an internet connection — anyone with a smartphone — could vote. Heck, why not go the whole hog and enable voting by SMS? On election day, just open up an app on your phone and cast a vote; it would take 30 seconds, tops. The entire landscape of voting would change overnight.
For some 40 years, voter turnout has decreased across the Western world — and almost exclusively in younger generations. The decline isn’t fully…...

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