Saturday, February 21, 2004


France uses Ireland's e-vote system

The Nedap/Powervote system is to be used in local elections in Brest in March, and will be extended to a number of other constituencies for the European Parliament elections in June.

Slovak news: Test e-vote on the way

THE KOŠICE higher territorial unit and the city's technical university are preparing to run a test presidential election vote via the internet.

The city wanted to run a test vote in early February asking registered voters several questions, including whether they agreed that Slovak legislation should change to enable the e-vote.
Mercury News - Fri, Feb. 20, 2004
Lawmakers unveil e-vote security bill

California's reliance on electronic-voting technology came under renewed scrutiny Thursday when two state lawmakers unveiled a measure to create new safeguards and a voting-rights group urged voters not to rely on touch-screen machines in next month's election.
The Austin Chronicle - FEBRUARY 20, 2004
How Safe Is Your E-Vote?
www.helpisathand.gov.uk - 2003-09-24
To e-vote or not to e-vote?
Don't think e-voting will come to Canada?
Well it's come already to England.

Guardian Unlimited - Thursday April 17, 2003
E-vote early, e-vote often?

Mobile phones, digital TV, postal voting and that ubiquitous holy grail, the "worldwide interweb", will be at the disposal of a total of 6.5 million voters this year, taking Britain (or at least England) further away from what Robin Cook described as the "anachronism" of the pencil stub, and closer to the government's stated ambition of an e-enabled general election some time after 2006.

but apparently there are some second thoughts
Guardian Unlimited - Monday December 8, 2003
Electoral Commission rules out e-voting

High-tech methods of voting via email and text message should not be used in next year's elections to local councils and the European parliament, a report warned today.

but also third thoughts
Guardian Unlimited - Thursday February 12, 2004
Voting against internet elections

In Britain, enthusiasm for e-democracy (which includes e-consulting as well as e-voting) runs high in official circles. Last year's local e-voting pilot was the largest ever held, with 146,000 votes cast electronically. However, hopes for electronic voting in June's elections were complicated by the clash with European elections (apart from anything else, the need to include Gibraltar as part of south-west England).

The government is still committed to offering e-voting in a general election "some time after 2008". The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister last month began working with local authorities to set up a system of electronic electoral registers, essential if people are to vote electronically while outside their own constituency.
The Computers, Freedom, Privacy 2004 Program indicates a number of sessions related to Internet/electronic voting.

Also the opening keynote speaker will be David Dill, presumably the one who founded VerifiedVoting.org

Thursday, February 19, 2004

Mississippi voids November 2003 e-vote election for errors

report by Steve Corrick of OperationEnduringVote.org
Ottawa Citizen
Elections Act to undergo broad review

Proportional representation, scrapping the permanent voters list and new rules for election advertising will all be on the table as part of a sweeping review of Canada's Elections Act announced yesterday.

I do think bringing back enumeration is a good idea.
I just hope they don't try to move to electronic or Internet voting.
InformationWeek - Feb. 9, 2004
E-Voting Systems Face Security Questions

In south Florida last month, an electronic-voting system from Election Systems & Software was used in a special election to fill a seat in the state Legislature. The election was decided by 12 votes. However, more than 130 voters cast blank ballots using the touch-screen system.

No one is sure why those ballots were blank. Speculation ranges from voters deciding at the last minute not to vote to software errors to voters failing to confirm their votes on the final screen. Normally, such a close election results in a recount. But without paper ballots or punch cards to check, there's nothing to recount.

Emphasis mine.

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

Technology in Government, January/February 2004
Markham's online elections get vote of approval from percentage of electorate

In fact, it worked so well that [Markham CIO] Allen foresees potentially expanding the use of e-voting considerably in future elections.

"One of the options we're looking at -- and I'm not sure if we're going to go there -- is eliminating polls altogether," he says. "That's what some government agencies have done."

Voters could either vote over the Net or the phone, using IVR (interactive voice response) or SMS (short messaging service). Or, he adds, all polling stations could be connected to the Internet.

Everything you ever wanted to know about online voting
ES&S produces some BS. I don't even know what this gibberish means.

Q: How do we know that the vote as electronically reported was correctly reflecting what the individuals who voted actually did?

A: First, the system goes through a pre-testing process to ensure that all votes are cast and recorded correctly by the system. Then, during the election, each voter is presented with a review page prior to submission of the ballot. The system holds each individual ballot so that the voter can double-check to make sure the ballot accurately reflects voter intent.

Q: How is the electronic vote audited?

A: The system does not tally the votes but rather delivers the raw votes cast. Those votes are encrypted. The encryption key is kept by the local jurisdiction and is the only body that can access the votes and tally the results. The encryption process allows for seeding certain identified voters with a receipt trail.

This receipt trail allows for certain voters to review their individual votes prior to the tally in the system.
Security of Electronic Voting (PDF)
UK publication of a study report on e- voting security by CESG - the information assurance group within GCHQ (part of the UK's security services). Issue 1.2, 31 July 2002
from an old version an evote news page. Newer version of the page linked here.
Brookings Institute - 2000
Internet Voting
includes a transcript and a webcast of an event they held.
the david lawrence show -Electronic Voting Machines
What's currently being written about electronic voting machines around the web...
Paper Vote Canada has made it to page three of Google hits for canada internet voting and canada electronic voting.
I was hoping it would start off higher than that, but I guess it's ok for a new site.
eGovernment News – 14 November 2003
Linux-based Internet voting system successfully used in Canada
has some information about the recent municipal vote.
And a worrying quote.

Federal government House leader Don Boudria said: "As minister responsible for the Canada Elections Act, electronic voting is of particular interest to me. Voting electronically addresses issues such as time and distance that sometimes prevent people from voting."
I had this in the links for a while but it's really just a short list.
Yahoo: Politics - Elections - Internet Voting
Wired News
Move to Block California E-Vote

Monday, February 16, 2004

Wired News
The Computer Ate My Vote

Sunday, February 15, 2004

Industry Canada Smart Communities also seems to be involved with Internet vote stuff, although I couldn't find out exactly to what extent.

In this long article which looks to be from 2000 Smart Communities Program: A Local Focus For A National Strategy it says

Local Democracy and Services to Citizens

A municipality-run Internet portal can provide citizens with on-line access to council meetings and transcripts of council decisions as soon as meetings end. On-Line voting in municipal elections will be available, and citizens can have access to discussion sites where public comment is invited on municipal issues currently before council. All municipal permits, taxes and licenses can be paid on-line 24 hours a day.
One of the problems is that organizations view technology as a universal benefit.
Using technology is bold, innovative, forward-looking.

Betty de Haan, CMO, CAO/Clerk Township of South Stormont "2003 Municipal Elections: Telephone/Internet Voting User Perspective" (PDF)

Not one single slide on security.
We are informed that it was faster and cheaper though.
And of course EVERYTHING benefits from being faster and cheaper...

Presentation Broadband for Connected Communities in Ontario 2003 Conference.
Your tax dollars.

It's not clear whether CANARIE is supporting proving interactive websites for election information (good) or Internet voting (bad).
Voter Outreach Program Increases Voter Turnout at Markham's Advance Polls by 300%

Preliminary data collected from Internet voters revealed that 93 percent of respondents would be "very likely" to vote online again in a future election and 99 percent said that an interactive web site will be helpful in future elections. This unprecedented research is funded in part by the Applied Research in Interactive Media (ARIM) Program, a joint program between CANARIE Inc. and the Department of Canadian Heritage.

Applied Research in Interactive Media Program
BBC News - Sunday, 15 February, 2004
Concerns over US computer voting. Via Slashdot.

About 25% of the US electorate is expected to vote electronically in this year's November presidential election. This is up from around 15% in 2000.


But Professor David Dill from Stanford University told the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science the switch may actually make things worse.

"The problem with electronic voting is your votes disappear into the electronic machine and there is no independent way to check that those results are valid," said Professor Dill.

"I know that I am not going to have a lot of confidence in the vote totals reported by those machines unless there is some independent polling or whatever that is consistent with that."

It's a report from the AAAS Symposium Voting Technology: Current Assessment and Future Prospects, which was held today.
The Ottawa Citizen - Wednesday, January 28, 2004
The personal touch: The best way to avoid fraud in the balloting is to insist people actually show up to vote, by Scott Reid

The opportunities for fraud are endless. In the 2002 leadership race, which was conducted by mail, Samantha the cat was the least of the party's problem voters. Former Rhinoceros Party leader Charlie McKenzie purchased a mail-in ballot legally, and then proceeded to auction it off on EBay. Mr. Mackenzie was reported to have stated that the sale was "an experiment in democratic capitalism," and was paraphrased by reporter Jill Vardy as saying that the ballot auction was "a gentle jab at a political system run by money."

Switching from mail-in ballots to telephone or Internet balloting does not solve the problem.


If the leadership election organizing committee chooses any form of voting that does not involve every single voter physically turning up at the polls or (in the case of shut-ins) being visited at home by a party official, it is entirely possible that the leadership of the new party will be decided on the basis of fraud.

Even if this disaster is avoided, it is a virtual certainty that at least some of the ballots cast for the new leader of the party will have been cast fraudulently...

The committee must ensure that every such loophole is firmly shut and is transparently beyond any form of tampering.
City of Ottawa - Elections 2003

All I was able to find was a FAQ

Q - How will the automated vote counting system set up by the City work?
A - The automated vote counting system used for Elections 2003 will be the same method used during the last municipal elections. Voting will be easy and results will arrive quickly after the end of voting.
More electronic voting companies

Administration and Cost of Elections Project - Elections and Technology Index
Loads of links on Lorrie Cranor's Electronic Voting Hot List
The Center for the Study of Technology and Society - 15 Feb 2001
Special Focus on Internet Voting
Slashdot - Sunday 15 February 2004
The State of Electronic Voting in Georgia
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