Top Threats to Online Voting from a Cybersecurity Perspective

Last year, NASA set up an online voting campaign to pick a name for an astronomical object, a small ice-covered asteroid roving through a remote part of the Solar system. Although the New Horizons space probe has yet to take a picture of it, thousands of people have thus learned about the newly discovered astronomical entity. This is a great example of how a trivial push of a button to choose an appealing denomination can engage people and enhance their awareness. Welcome to the world of online voting!

This fundamental process, also referred to as electronic voting or e-voting, revolves around enabling users to express their opinion and make a choice. This is an inalienable and extremely important privilege, even if it boils down to dubbing boulders in outer space. Regardless of the sphere and goals, voting has always been associated with errors, manipulation, and sabotage. As this process has migrated online, new threats have emerged, and so have the prerequisites for a higher level of security. To make the average modern voting system secure, it makes sense to identify the potential cyber threats and vulnerabilities of this routine and come up with countermeasures. Here are some takeaways from such an analysis.

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The very essence of online voting implies the use of a dedicated Internet platform and digital devices. This method has numerous benefits, including the ability to engage many people, the convenience, and reliability of the whole process, as well as automated calculation of the results.

However, just like any Internet-borne procedure, e-voting can be prone to certain risks. Some of them have their offline counterparts, such as the sale of votes. Others are inherent to the digital environment only. The latter include breaches and DDoS attacks. Furthermore, since the poll takes place without direct surveillance, there is an (Read more...)

*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from InfoSec Resources authored by David Balaban. Read the original post at: