Voting is a fundamental part of democratic systems; it provides people in a community the ability to voice their opinion. In recent years, voter turnout has diminished while concerns regarding integrity, security, and accessibility of current voting systems have escalated. e-voting was introduced to address those concerns; however, it is not cost-effective and still requires full supervision by a central authority. The blockchain is an emerging, decentralized, and distributed technology that promises to enhance different aspects of many industries. Expanding e-voting with blockchain technology could be the answer to alleviate this issue in voting.
e-voting with blockchain technology preserves voter privacy and increases accessibility while keeping the voting system transparent, secure and cost-effective.
The Democracy and Governance Context
The integrity of electoral processes is of increasing global concern even in stable democracies, with Freedom House characterizing 2017 as the “most serious crisis” in decades for democratic governance.
Blockchain can address many security and even logistical practices of government data exchange.
Citizens’ data is harder to incorrectly or illegally erase or edit when it’s stored across blockchain-like networks, and these networks can prevent multiple agencies from having to repeatedly request an individual’s information. In the absence of a central system, hackers, or even hostile nation-state actors, lack the main target for attacks. Also, if governments don’t need to invest in major data
With new additions to blockchain technology, systems can cross-verify that they contain the same information or correspond to the same individual (like a Social Security number) without transmitting or viewing the underlying information itself. So-called zero-knowledge proofs offer
positive implications for privacy: Sensitive data can be verified without being transmitted, or even seen, by observers or accessed by a government employee.
Crowdfunding and citizen participation efforts could be completely transformed by the blockchain. Blockchain takes the ubiquitous online up-or-down vote to a new level, where reviewers, curators, and implementers of projects build trust over time and follow through on proposed projects. This system of trust allows for verified, public actions to define individuals and groups.
• High costs related to ballot printing, electronic voting machines, maintenance, etc.
• Increasing threats of cyberattacks compromising election results
• Lack of transparency due to a centralized process of election results audit
• Voting delays or inefficiencies related to absentee voting
Blockchain value proposition:
• Potential cost savings through blockchain-enabled voting
• Potential for enhanced security and audibility of votes
• Potential for greater participation in elections, including remotely
• Greater transparency meeting citizens’ needs
With the help of