[E-voting] The best VVAT is good for

vote at electronic-vote.org vote at electronic-vote.org
Wed Oct 26 14:02:33 IST 2005


I agree with Aengus 100%! 

Votes must be anonymous, so nobody can verify if each of them is what its 
(unknown) voter actualy casted. Thus the only way to have certainity about 
electoral result is to collect votes using secure and verifiable procedures. 

*) Paper elections held under proper public monitoring can guarantee fair 
and square elections. This is possible because humans can verify operations 
dealing with ballot papers which are visible and tangible objects (By the 
way, what's wrong with ballot paper?, do we really need to switch to 
electronic elections?) 

*) Computer procedures are not verifiable by humans since we are not 
equipped for verifying operations which occur in the microscopic scale 
within nanosecond timeframes. Thus, for people who didn't program them, 
computers act just like black boxes and their operations can truly be 
verified only by knowing the input and comparing the expected output with 
the actual output. Unfortunatly, because of vote secrecy, elections have no 
known input nor any expected output with which to compare electoral results, 
thus electronic electoral results can't be verified by humans 

Hence electronic voting is not a simple technical evolution of classic paper 
voting because electronic electoral result cannot be verified by humans and 
the people need to have an absolute faith in the accuracy, honesty and 
security of the whole electoral apparatus (people, software, hardware and 
networks). 

Requiring reliance on such faith is clearly not compatible with Democracy. 

E-voting's limitations are theoretical and thus cannot be overcome: 
electronic results are unverifiable whichever technical solution may be used 
to implement elections. 

Ciao from Italy, 

Emanuele Lombardi
  http://www.electronic-vote.org 





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