West Virginia to Commence Blockchain-Based Mobile Voting App in Time for Midterm Elections
In a report shared by Coin Desk, it appears that West Virginia is working on a mobile app that would serve as a voting system in time for midterm elections. It was revealed that the app would be implemented by all of its counties – adding the likes of military members to vote as well, even if they are not physically present.
News surrounding the blockchain-based voting app first surfaced in May, where the Secretary of State, Mac Warner unveiled that given all the pilot phases are successful, then the voting app will be used during the midterms, which typically occurs during the month of November.
According to CNN, the voting app was a combined effort of both Warner and Voatz, who both believe that the app is safe. As for how it works, users are advised to capture a photo of their government-issued ID and a selfie video of their face to ensure that the details being fed are accurate. Upon approval, voters can then cast their vote.
As for the results of the pilot phase, it has been concluded that it “revealed no problems”. This, based on Coin Desk’s report, is a result of four audits of the app’s embedded blockchain structure as well.
While the idea of creating a blockchain-based voting app seems to have rose due to Russia’s interference in the 2016 U.S Elections, many do not seem thrilled about the idea. Many of the discomfort expressed seem to be similar, in the sense that many are not liking the idea of the use of internet for such purposes – calling it a “horrific” idea altogether.
CNN quoted the Chief Technologist at the Center for Democracy and Technology, Joseph Lorenzo Hall, saying the following:
“Mobile Voting is a horrific idea […] It’s the internet voting on people’s horribly secured devices, over our horrible networks, to servers that are very difficult to secure without a physical paper record of the vote.”
President of the Election, Marian K. Schneider has since shut down the entire idea in the simplest manner possible. She explicitly said, “The short answer is no.”
What is your take on this matter? Do you think the Voatz voting app will strive despite the negativity surrounding it?