Blockchain Voting Solution Announced By Kaspersky Labbr>
International software security group Kaspersky Lab has announced a secure online voting system based on blockchain technology and backed with transparent crypto algorithms.
Announced during the company’s Cyber Security Weekend for the Middle East, Turkey and Africa, the new product, called Polys, offers a customizable online voting platform for non-commercial organizations, businesses, and communities. Based on ethereum smart contracts, Polys aims to provide anyone with the ability to conduct secure, anonymous and scalable online voting, with results that cannot be altered by participants or organizers.
“Due to blockchain’s decentralized nature, the accuracy of voting execution can be verified by the network’s participants,” the company said. “The whole voting data is stored not on servers, but in information blocks on the computers of all network participants: to erase it, a hacker would have to breach all of the computers and gain access to the individual sets of data. Blockchain also allows a voter to easily check if their vote has actually been registered correctly and any tampering of votes will automatically become evident. Blockchain transparency makes it easier to monitor votes and complete voting audits by independent parties. It also doesn’t require extra resources or the need for the physical presence of personnel.”
Kaspersky Lab proposes two typical use cases for Polys: early-adopting environments such as universities, where students and faculty will be able to informally vote for classes and student councils, and tech-oriented “future cities” that need new solutions for conducting formal elections with speed, reliability and trust.
The source code of Polys will be made available on GitHub, allowing anyone to test, verify, and explore the technology behind it. In addition to the customized platform, there’s also a ready-to-use “freemium” service that is available for everyone.
Vartan Minasyan, Head of Investment and Innovation at Kaspersky Lab, said the Kaspersky Lab Business Incubator is keen to support both internal and external teams in developing bright ideas and technologies, which can be implemented in various areas where safety and security are important.
“One such area is online voting and, when exploring the possible implementations of blockchain in particular, our team realized that this technology combined with the company’s cyber security expertise could solve key problems related to the privacy, transparency and security of online voting,” said Minasyan. “We’re excited that we have been able to create a suitable environment for this internal innovation.”
The idea of using blockchain technology to ensure that digital elections remain secure isn’t a new one. In 2014, the Danish political party Liberal Alliance used blockchain technology for inner party elections.
Last month, the US state of West Virginia became the first US state to test a blockchain mobile app for voting. The app is being offered to deployed military personnel and their dependents from the counties of Harrison and Monongalia for the May 8 election for West Virginia’s Senate primary election.