Block(chain) the vote? Slow down, researchers say

One belief about blockchain that has persisted for some time is the idea of a permanent, unchangeable record of something being a tonic for the problems plaguing things like voting systems. But researchers from the Initiative for CryptoCurrencies and Contracts (IC3) aren't so sure that experiments like those in West Virginia are a winning idea. The folks there are blockchain proponents but fear blockchain-based internet voting could do the opposite of what's intended: having the public believe the vote is fairer when in fact it's less so.

Imagine voting records that are stored transparently on a blockchain but reflect votes surreptitiously altered before they were recorded, perhaps via malware installed on people's phones that caused votes for Smith to actually be cast for Jones. Or perhaps widespread vote buying efforts made easier now that ballots are not as secret and anonymous as before. "Officials and companies who promote online voting are creating a false sense of security – and putting the integrity of the election process at risk. In seeking to use blockchains as a protective element, they may in fact be introducing new threats into the crucial mechanics of democracy," the IC3 says. (Source: Business Insider)