The controversy surrounding alleged Russian interference in the recent US presidential election has brought security in elections to the fore. In previous blogs on the topic, we’ve looked at some of the theory and practice of foreign intervention in elections. This week we turn our attention to online election security in our fourth and final post in this series.
So far in this series, we’ve seen some of the tactics foreign election interveners have used to favor certain candidates. Such tactics seek to influence electorates’ opinion of certain candidates in the hope that their voting behavior will be affected.
But what about outright tampering with the election itself? As digitalization continues, online elections are becoming closer to becoming a reality. At the moment we trust the technology which allows online banking, shopping and even the extremely personal data for online dating! However, there still reservations about security in online elections.
Critics argue that, despite the manifold benefits that online voting brings – environmentally friendliness, quicker and cheaper to carry out, and increased voter turnout (to name just a few) – that the bedrock of democracies is too fragile to entrust to digital technology. Indeed, while the technology for some of the world’s largest elections is still under development, there have been incredible strides made already. Estonia, for example, has been voting online since 2005 and some of the world’s largest institutions are making the switch to online elections for their boards and supervisory councils.
POLYAS and online election security
POLYAS is working towards changing the perception of online election security. Working with thousands of clients across the globe have helped us to understand the complex needs of many institutions. Online voting has become a reality in many organizations. Millions of people have cast their votes with POLYAS from corporations, associations, schools, churches and copyright institutions. Even political parties trust our software to deliver secure and reliable results for their internal elections.
POLYAS’ cutting edge technology simultaneously maintains the secrecy of the ballot and ensures that only authorized voters can participate in elections. By doing so, we deliver secure and legally valid elections for the growing number of organizations with whom we work. We are also continually investing in improving our services. When the political world catches up with the digital times – we’ll be waiting!
Many will remain skeptical about the safety of online voting in political elections. Because of this, paper ballots will not be disappearing anytime soon. Trusted, older voting procedures will provide a constant to compare the trustworthiness of online voting. The nature of democracy is in our collective commitment to tackling any issues in a transparent manner for the benefit of the people.