Cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab launches blockchain-based EVM for secure online voting

Polys, a project from the Kaspersky Innovation Hub developing a secure online voting platform for businesses, universities and political parties, unveiled a prototype of its new Polys Voting Machine.
By INDO ASIAN NEWS SERVICE
| Updated on Mar 01 2020, 03:51 PM IST
blockchain-based EVM for secure online voting
blockchain-based EVM for secure online voting (Kaspersky)

Cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab has unveiled prototype of a new voting machine with Blockchain technology that works alongside an online election system so that all votes - whether cast at polling stations or on personal devices - are transmitted and processed together in a secure way.

Polys, a project from the Kaspersky Innovation Hub developing a secure online voting platform for businesses, universities and political parties, unveiled a prototype of its new Polys Voting Machine.

"As we see from our Polys platform, e-voting allows more possibilities for remote participation and even increasing turnout of younger people," Roman Aleshkin, head of product at Polys, said in a statement.

Online voting brings a number of benefits, like the ability to vote remotely; automatically calculate results; ease logistical challenges, and provide centralized process management.

This gives election participants a choice of how to vote, whilst ensuring election organisers can introduce a secure online voting option with guaranteed privacy.

The Polys Voting Machine has been created to work on distributed ledger technology. This means that all vote information is stored in a decentralized manner on several blockchain nodes.

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This is how it works.

To use one of the machines, voters would need to authenticate themselves with documents to prove their identity.

They would receive a unique QR code (or other token), which is not known by anyone except for the voter.

After scanning it with a special device, he or she can select an option on a display on the Polys Voting Machine.

Via this QR code, a person can also check on a special web application that his or her vote was registered in the blockchain, but their name and choice will not be stored in the blockchain, to prevent tracing it to a specific individual.

An access code can also be associated to an election in a specific area, said the company.

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This means that when voting, the citizen is only shown representatives for their local election even if they are at a polling station located in another region.

To allow audits and recounts, a special Polys Printer can be connected to this distributed ledger providing an accurate paper trail.

This device is located at the head office of the regional election team and issues a paper ballot once a decision is made.

The voting machines can be interconnected with the Polys online voting platform across a single blockchain system.

 

"This means they share one voter register which eliminates the possibility of a voter casting his or her vote twice, using different options," the company added.

As a result, tech-savvy users can vote securely from their smartphone or device using the online version, while those who prefer to visit the polling station can cast their votes on a Polys Voting Machine - with all votes automatically encrypted and counted.

However, moving voting online can pose a barrier for people who are not habitual users of smartphones or laptops, or those who simply prefer casting their vote in person at a polling station.

Another challenge is enabling a secret ballot to happen without revealing a person's decision, whilst at the same time providing the ability for voters to check if their votes were counted, said the company.

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First Published Date: 01 Mar, 03:51 PM IST
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