Blockchain Voting Systems — Can Democracy Rely on Them?
Shiraz Jagati's original article for cointelegraph.com reduced by 54%
To better understand the frailties of blockchain-based voting systems, Cointelegraph reached out to Barry Gitarts, one of the implementing developers of the voting decentralized application for the Status network. "The biggest unsolved issue with these types of votes is that in order for the vote to not be prone to manipulation there has be to identity tied to the voters, otherwise some voters can get a disproportionate amount of voting power by splitting their tokens among multiple addresses and voting with them." "The very fact that the developer of the system cannot publicly prove that no vote was stolen means that the whole idea of using blockchain is flawed. The killing feature of a blockchain for voting is publicity: in a correctly built system, anyone should be able to check that the results were calculated correctly." "A blockchain running only provisioned nodes still needs those nodes to be exposed to the internet for people to vote.
People attempting to compromise public facing applications is routine for any web application. The FBI is involved because of the target. You can't 'change votes' after the fact.
The target would have to be the voter's mobile phone and then only when they have authenticated and are ready to vote." "The blockchain part worked well, the problem was in the identification part. Blockchain is great for voting; however, identification is a complicated problem. We should not use any electronic voting system unless we are sure that identification works correctly." "The problem with blockchain voting is the front-end application that manages the new data that is added to the blockchain.
Blockchain technology does not stop someone from hacking the front-end application and altering the data before it is added to the blockchain. For example, it a fraudster is able to impersonate a legitimate voter, he can vote in place of the legitimate voter. This has nothing to do with the blockchain." "Its highly impossible to build 'foolproof systems.' Given enough time and resources everything and anything can be broken into.
Electronic voting and blockchain voting has a lot of problems but it holds some promise..
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CN [too long; didn’t read]
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