Internet voting not feasible concludes Singapore government

Wise judgement on the perils of electronic voting from Singapore:

The Elections Department has decided it will not offer overseas Singaporeans the option to cast their ballots online, after studying the feasibility of Internet voting…

“While Internet voting may appeal to some, it has various challenges like difficulties in authenticating voters, preventing impersonation and ensuring voting secrecy,” he said.

An online voting system is also vulnerable to hacking, and will make an audit of election results more difficult, he added. [The Straits Times]

One of the reasons that online voting is not to be trusted whilst online banking, for example, works is that with banking people know what the outcome of financial transactions should be. Therefore if something goes wrong – and things do go wrong – it is possible to untangle the problem and put matters right.

By contrast, the whole point of secret voting is that no-one knows what the result should be – which means you cannot spot and rectify errors in the way that is the necessary norm for online banking. Online voting is massively more difficult.

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