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Comment Re:Authentication then anonymity (Score 1) 214

"With an e-vote, how do you make sure whatever the voter decided is what got into the storing database without, at the same time, losing the voter's anonymity?"

A one-way hash function serving as a checksum for the ballot content combined with the voter identity.

If a person wants to verify that their vote is in the database, they go to a web cafe and enter the hash function that is on their vote receipt and the db reports that it has a ballot-answer-set with that hash.

If this is concerning, because someone might force the person to submit their hash at a specific time and have a collaborator on the inside look at which ballot that is so determine how the person voted, there is another variant of this hash-based verification where all that can be verified is that the vote, as cast, was in fact part of the count. If enough percent of randomly selected voters verify that their vote was counted, via the hash method, the election can statistically be considered sound.
I think Chaum's system includes this capability.

Comment Re:"Technologically impossible?" (Score 1) 214

See David Chaum's voting methods. As for understandability or trustworthiness of the method, one could get a line up of 100 cryptographic experts who would testify as to the apparent correctness of the algorithm and the implementation. At some point, you'll have to decide whether to trust that. If I could check their credentials and see that it was unanimous, I would believe that, to our present knowledge, it is a valid and unbroken voting method.

Another interesting twist would be to send the vote through three independently designed electronic voting systems, and only if the results from all three agreed perfectly would the election be considered valid.

Comment Re:"Technologically impossible?" (Score 1) 214

Why would an abusive controlling husband allow their wife/prisoner out of the house to cast a vote in a regular paper election, when such a vote is not controllable?

My point is, that kind of extreme coercion will prevent one-person-one-vote whether or not we have new technology for voting, and the new technology if designed well might help a person vote secretly when they have an hour away from their prison guard.

Comment How about this solution: snap elections (Score 1) 214

It would be known that the election will take place sometime this month.

But there would be a series of randomly timed, short 15 minute windows, announced via voting app notification, during which you can cast your vote with your smartphone or computer (requires fingerprint and face scan and secret knowledge to authenticate).

So you have to be being shadowed all the time, so that the vote coercer can be sure to catch you when the voting opportunity comes up.

Comment Re: Assembling people (Score 1) 214

So first we have to achieve effective freedom from systematic oppression, then we can have Internet voting.

The first one sounds like a pretty good goal anyway. And I think we're a long way along that road in liberal democracies.

What are we, some kind of tin-pot dictatorship with goons running around corralling people? I haven't seen that in my town for a while.

This whole "you will be co-erced into voting on command" thing strikes me as treating the adult population as if we were all helpless children.
I don't buy it.

Comment Re:"Technologically impossible?" (Score 1) 214

Because it's not possible to bug a voting booth with a hidden micro-camera. Uh huh.

Let me give you this alternative to the ballot booth. Allow people a period of one month to cast their e-ballot.
Someone wishing to peer over that person's shoulder then has to follow them around everywhere they go, or imprison them, for the month.

In the cases where that is happening (for example, extreme marital abuse, modern slavery etc) the subject person has a lot bigger problems than whether they got to vote or not, and if none of their friends, acquaintances, relatives, or social agencies can help them out of their prisoner-life, that is a very sad, and hopefully very exceptional case. But should the existence of such extreme corner cases, abhorrent as they are, stop the overwhelming majority of independent, competent adults from voting in a new manner that is likely to encourage far greater democratic participation?

Comment Authentication then anonymity (Score 1) 214

What you're missing, I believe, is that the authentication is required at a certain time, and the anonymity is required at a different, later time. Thus the two can be achieved with a clever enough crypto protocol. The intervening time (casting the ballot: that is, marking the answers, and the transformation of the authenticated right to author those ballot answers into the anonymized record of the ballot answers) can be managed using a secure session.

Comment Re: Will Internet Voting Endanger The Secret Ballo (Score 2) 214

Laymen cannot build a modern car or airplane or understand how it works, which means they cannot trust this system...

Same goes for the power grid, and the Internet, and pharmaceuticals.

Sooner or later, we're going to have to trust the concept of trusting a reputation based web of trust. We can't personally understand MOST of the technology that supports our modern lives.

Comment The main dangers with Trump (Score 1) 993

1. He's an ignorant buffoon, who lives in a cartoon version of reality of his own making.
2. He is a racist with uncontrollable potty-mouth, likely to start an accidental war with a major power.
3. He has a short temper, which is what you want in the person with the red button, for sure. Nuke that baby for me please.
4. He underperformed the stock market index with his daddy's money.

The only thing he's got going for him is that the ignorant racist loser faction of the US population finally have their rabid dog in the ring.
With this election, the rest of the world will get to see how big that faction is.
The rest of the world has learned to never overestimate the US voting public's average critical thinking skills, because of the two-term Bush insanity. That's right he was re-elected after he led the US into an futile, misguided and counter-productive not to mention entirely illegal, lie-based war against a made-up enemy of vaguely the same skin colour as some of tthe US's real enemies at the time.

That's why the rest of the world can't decide whether to laugh or cry this time around. What kind of crack are you people on?

Comment What's needed is a new architectural layer (Score 2) 47

which moves (encrypted) fragments of files around the world, ostensibly for performance and reliability reasons.
So it would act like a content delivery network does with whole files.
Except that this layer would be the default assumption for where you put data on the Internet.
Data in the new paradigm has no home physical location. It only has identity, and access rights granted by possession of decryption keys.
For data intended to be fully public, perhaps its metadata would be unencrypted in the layer, for searchability. But that would not imply a particular physical location for the data file payload itself. A search would result only in an identifier, which the layer infrastructure would locate an retrieve from multiple sources.

Data would automatically maintain sufficient worldwide distributed copies of itself, and the system would migrate (and cache) copies of data fragments closer to end-users of the data, based on speculative probabilistic co-access patterns. In other words, data would coalesce toward where it was needed, as an automagic feature of the distributed storage layer.

This kind of distributed encrypted storage layer thing (not owned by any single company of course, but rather both open/libre and partly peer-to-peer) needs to get implemented, and widely adopted so that it is a default assumption of how content on the Internet mostly works, BEFORE it is made substantially illegal by overreaching governments.

That's how to make the Internet remain borderless. Make it a fait accompli that is very hard to subvert technically without blocking nearly every ip address, which, if this is implemented right, could be a partial mirror of fragments of the content.
 

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