[ubuntu-za] eVotes for 2014

Morgan Collett morgan at ubuntu.com
Tue Apr 28 11:32:19 BST 2009


On Tue, Apr 28, 2009 at 12:02, Nic Roets <nroets at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Tue, Apr 28, 2009 at 11:43 AM, LordFoom <lordfoom at gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> In my opinion a paper trail is still crucial - view the Dieboldt
>
> Not quite true. Theoretically it is possible to design trusted electronic
> voting machines. Correctness of can be mathematically proven. Such proof can
> be review by the political parties and the parties will be allowed to
> monitor construction of the machines. Authentication codes can even be used
> to guarantee that results are not tampered with when they are electronically
> transmitted back from the polling stations. See
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UMAC
>
> And electronic voting machines will greatly reduce spoilt ballots (ink
> smudges etc).

Secure voting infrastructure is certainly theoretically possible, but
the machines generally get supplied by the lowest bidder at the
tender...

Open Source voting infrastructure has its supporters, including:
http://www.openvotingconsortium.org/ - however it's not a silver
bullet. There are many points of weakness, and we don't have the likes
of Ed Felten and Bev Harris to provide oversight...

To get back to the Ubuntu angle, while Ubuntu provides a great base to
customise, there's no particular Ubuntu angle when it comes to voting
machines. What you would load onto the machine would be a highly
customised setup that has been certified by the relevant authority.
The Ubuntu community are great at packaging awesome software mostly
developed by others - it would be too limiting to start in the Ubuntu
community and try to develop open voting infrastructure. It would be
better to work with those international projects who have made
headway, and then at the appropriate time evaluate whether Ubuntu
provides the best platform that can be audited and certified.

My 2c worth...

Some links:
http://www.freedom-to-tinker.com/tags/voting
http://blackboxvoting.org/
http://www.wired.com/politics/security/news/2006/10/71957
... and of course Bruce Schneier...

Regards
Morgan



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