Problems With New Voting App at Iowa Caucus, Is Time For To Adopt Blockchain Apps?


Last night at the Iowa Democratic Party’s Caucus, the new mobile voting app provided had serious problems that led to inconsistencies in data from the voting submitted.

The caucus is the place where Iowa Democrats were supposed to vote for their next leader who will run opposing in an effort to defeat President Donald Trump in this year’s presidential elections. However, the app the Democratic Party had intended on using at the other 1,700 caucus' in the country malfunctioned.

Could the Story Be a Promotion for Blockchain?

The Iowa Democratic Party’s head of communications, Mandy McClure, made a statement in which she said there were inconsistencies in reports of 3 sets of results and that it’s going to take some more time before the results will be reported. She added:

“This is simply a reporting issue, the app did not go down, and this is not a hack or intrusion.” The party is using “photos of results and a paper trail to validate that all results match and ensure that we have confidence and accuracy in the numbers we report.”

Obviously, this whole story leads crypto enthusiasts to think of the use of blockchain for voting. So, why isn’t the Democratic Party willing to use a type of technology that’s beyond manual auditing and paper trails?

Is It Mistrust?

Platforms like the Boston-based voting known as Voatz uses blockchain and logs the votes on IBM’s HyperLedger blockchain. Voatz has already been given a trial test in West Virginia, where it provided “virtual ballots” for voters registered from out of state and where it performed impeccably. This is what Voatz’s co-founder, Nimit Sawhney, declared back in 2018 about the type of voting his company promotes:

“Nothing is 100 percent safe and that’s true of paper-based voting as it's done right now. But for innovation to take place in the election space, we need to make the process more accessible and find an easier option to vote.”

It’s true that voting using blockchain technology has some problems. For example, the decentralized networks are too open and can expose the votes, whereas the more secure, centralized and private networks need to belong to companies that are truly trusted. Either way, a change needs to be done so that the event in Iowa doesn’t repeat itself.

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