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Melissa Seideman

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Is Internet Voting Inevitable?

How might the internet alter U.S. democratic institutions, including how Americans get information about and even vote for their public officials in general elections, has been the subject of much debate in recent months. Online voting is one of the most controversial aspects in this debate- a subject that began in March 2000 when the Arizona Democratic Party allowed for the first time remote Internet voting in its presidential primary race.

The prospect of being able to vote "in your pajamas," as its been described captured the imagination of political leaders, technology innovators, and voters around the world.

Is internet voting inevitable? Do you think people should be forced to assemble at polling places in order to cast their ballots? Is there benefits from entering the "public sphere?"

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    Oct 17 2013: Internet voting as well as voting computers will never be save against manipulation!

    Flawless or secure computer programs are myths.

    Is it really that hard for us to get out of our pajamas once in four years?

    Our vote security is worth it!
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      Oct 19 2013: Do you vote by paper in Germany as we do in Sweden?
      On our last election some of those papers "disappeared"... into a trench... I'd rather have encryption on a server then some random person counting votes that never get to be validated...

      Can you be sure that your vote was counted in the last election because I can't...
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        Oct 19 2013: There is no 100% security in any voting procedure we could come up with, yet I prefer the most save.

        The most votes are done on paper in Germany and there are just a view voting computers in some areas. The supervision of the process is ensured by many people from different parties, which in their own interest control each other, and there are also officials. All of them are personally accountable in case of fraud. The papers get stored for a certain time frame, so that they can be checked again id necessary.

        When paper 'disappear' a new election has to be held and investigations kick in to figure out what happened.

        I can only encourage you to dig deeper into the so called 'encryption wars' between the hacker community and government agencies where you will find, that hackers highly warn never to trust in any encryption! Hacker are highly talented people in this field, more than I am, but I understand their concerns, agree with their arguments and follow their warning. I found in the German hacker community one of the most pure democratic spirits in my country, the are concerned, they care and this is what convinces me.

        Can't I be sure that my vote is counted? No, nobody can, unless you follow the whole process yourself, which we can here in Germany, at least on local levels.

        I choose for the lowest risk.
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          Oct 19 2013: Did you watch the related Talk by David Bismark?
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          Oct 19 2013: Thanks for sharing your discussion. I really love this global participation! Thanks for making my class have a richer discussion.
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        Oct 19 2013: No, I have not seen it. Recommended?
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        Oct 25 2013: @ Melissa & Jimmy

        I watched the talk by David Bismark in which his only argument for 'E-voting without fraud' was:

        Secure encryption

        Yet he didn't explain what makes 'his' encryption method any 'saver' than others and he also didn't explain how the vote verification on the Internet is protected against manipulation and how a 'user' can be assured that the data he gets are the real data of the vote itself.

        Honestly, I am not surprised that David Bismark is avoiding to talk about this issues, as, as I said, there aren't any 'secure encryption methods' available one could trust in.

        He also didn't explain how the 'vote scanning system' is secured against fraud. He didn't even explain how it handles the data, how it collects and analyzes the. How is it connected? Via the unsafe Internet via unsafe encryption?

        How can I trust the company which wrote this encryption method? How can I trust the company which wrote the 'connection software'. How can I trust the company which wrote the analysis software?
        How do I know that no foreign intelligence agency is manipulating the E-vote in my country?

        Can you?

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kUhkOQtEKaw
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOVYnGd3lGI

        Just recently it came out, that the NSA has spied on the cellphone communication of the Chancellor of my country, and you can be very sure, that the cellphone she was using is not a usual one and was carefully 'secured' by encryption 'specialists'.

        Be careful whom you trust!

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