Ohio Proposes to Establish Blockchain Voting Pilot
Lawmakers in Ohio have tabled proposals that could flag the way for the introduction of blockchain voting, as part of measures planned to overhaul elections in the state.
Democrats in the state House of Representatives have proposed a pilot program powered by blockchain, which could originally be used by overseas military voters.
The bill, introduced on Tuesday, recommends that the Secretary of State Frank LaRose establishes the pilot scheme to explore applications of blockchain technology in the voting use case.
Introduced by Reps. Beth Liston and Michele Lepore-Hagan, the proposals state voters would transmit ballots through an encrypted blockchain, to assure the system “protects the security and integrity of the process and protects the voter’s privacy.”
While no particular delivery associate was mentioned for the blockchain pilot, there are believed to be various firms in Ohio, such as Votem, competent in delivering the technology.
Comparable systems have also been produced by firms, including Voatz, which has been included in similar pilots in Utah and West Virginia.
If established, the blockchain pilot would start with overseas military personnel, before an ultimate rollout of the system over voters in the state.
The proposals come at a time when blockchain voting is already under important investigation, with security researchers in particular concerned about the security issues started up by voting on the blockchain.
In a letter to election officials issued on April 9, the American Association for the Advancement of Science displayed its concerns about securing the “secrecy, security and verifiability” of this type of technology.
“Internet voting should not be used in the future until and unless very robust guarantees of security and verifiability are developed and in place, as no known technology guarantees the secrecy, security, and verifiability of a marked ballot transmitted over the Internet.”