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Fraud-Proof Internet Voting

improve turn out rate and prevent election fraud
 
(+2, -2)
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Internet voting has often been suggested as a way to improve turn out at general elections. But it hasn't been done so far because of security concerns. There is an easy way around that, I think.

Here's how it would work: A voting website is set up. Voters are then issued with two passwords, which are given to them only after their identity has been confirmed (eg. by presenting a birth certificate in a bank branch or post office). Voters use the first password to open an account with a username of their choice, and they can only do that once. The second password is used for the vote. Once the choice is confirmed, the second password will no loger work. If voters suspect their vote has been compromised by a hacker, they can pick up a new password as many times as they like (after proving their identity) and amend their choice.

Now here's the clever bit: After election day, all votes are made public. Anonymity would still be guaranteed because votes are only listed by username and constituency, not real name (unless the voters choose to do so).

So, a voter will now know for certain if his/her vote has been counted correctly. If not, they can file a complaint at the voting website, and their vote will appear in red. If more than an average number of votes appear in red in a constituency (taking trolls into account), an investigation would ensue.

Nb. This system would still not prevent people form stealing votes of non-voters, but the ballot system has the same weakness.

kinemojo, Sep 22 2005

[link]






       Problem: availability of unique identifiers and user acceptance.
Variation: allow each voter the option to challenge one other voter, use it or lose it. The election commission must verify the identity of a challenged voter. That procedure puts a strong check on 'mass engineered' voting block scams.
reensure, Sep 22 2005
  

       Problem: People are uncreative and a lot would choose some variation of their name as a user name.   

       Problem: Nothing to stop people selling or giving away their votes in a much more fool proof way than normal.   

       Problem: (To quote dilbert) "We never need vote sober again".
hidden truths, Sep 22 2005
  

       >>Problem: People are uncreative and a lot would choose some variation of their name as a user name.<<   

       Simple Solution: Site displays a warning message when accounts are set up. For uncreative voters, a "help" button with a list of (unallocated) fictional, easy to remember user names appears. If people still choose their own name, it's their problem. Government is not everyone's nanny.   

       >>Problem: Nothing to stop people selling or giving away their votes in a much more fool proof way than normal.<<   

       Why should people not be allowed to sell their vote? The vote is theirs. What they choose to do with it is their own business.
kinemojo, Sep 23 2005
  

       There are a number of other problems with this idea:
- The reason Internet voting has been posited as a possible turnout booster is because people wouldn't have to get off their fat behinds and queue at the polling office. If your scheme depends on them presenting credentials at a bank or post office you're simply relocating the queues and any advantage over conventional voting is lost.

-By your own admission, this idea does nothing to improve on the ease with which votes can be stolen.

Finally, you're departing from democracy with this bit: \\Why should people not be allowed to sell their vote? The vote is theirs. What they choose to do with it is their own business.//This kind of thing leads to an even more plutocratic situation than many democracies currently labour under. Do you suppose the rich people buying the poor peoples' votes will use them to improve their own situation, or that of the poor?

Not enough thought here but I wouldn't feel bad - no one's got this right yet. [-]
DocBrown, Sep 23 2005
  
      
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