[Fsfe-ie] perspective on e-voting

Niall Douglas s_fsfeurope2 at nedprod.com
Sun Feb 29 21:08:43 CET 2004

Hash: SHA1

On 29 Feb 2004 at 14:01, Fergal Daly wrote:

> > Personally I can't see much use for a paper trail if the source is
> > fully open. However since it's unlikely the source would be made
> > open (breach of contract or an expensive renegotiation), a paper
> > trail is better than nothing.
> The problem is that you don't know that the source code you saw is
> actually running on the machine and now matter how much you study it,
> you'll never really know that it's actually 100% bug free.

Data signing techniques could fix this and all software has bugs. 
Also, you don't need a perfect voting system, just one which is 
better (more accurate) than the current system - and I'm personally 
not too bothered about a flawed system which has in place an active 
method of improvement over time.

BTW when I said "open", I meant it being able to be altered by 
volunteers a bit like a sourceforge project - not just publishing the 
source. This brings the formidable security & debuggability 
advantages of free software to bear. By far and away free software is 
*ideal* for these kinds of software as they don't need to be 

The worst thing in my mind is to make these boxes and use them 
unchanged - this gives time for special interests to discover how to 
compromsie them with no opportunity for the holes to be found and 
sealed. A paper trail is only useful if what is printed out is 
identical to the vote recorded electronically and if humans continue 
to manually count the paper copies (and the latter is precisely what 
the government is trying to save costs upon).


Version: idw's PGP-Frontend / 9-2003 + PGP 8.0.2


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