The team Zelensky has told about ambitious plans: in the presidential election of 2024, the Ukrainians will be able to vote online. The preparation of the bill already does. Is it realistic and what are the advantages and disadvantages of the system – in the article 24 of the channel.
The corresponding statement was made by presidential adviser Mikhail Fedorov. The project is called The Vote (“Vote”). So, at the first stage it is planned to do surveys, thanks to which officials will know the opinion of Ukrainians. The system identification will be implemented through Mobile ID, digital signature, Bank ID.
Fedorov noted: e-voting can enter before the local elections in 2020. In the presidential, according to him, the system will work exactly.
This is a complex technical task, in which the principal is ensuring the confidentiality, integrity and anonymity of the vote… We want to give people the tools of direct democracy. And in parallel, of course, need to develop ways of electronic interaction with government, shaping the culture,
– said Fedorov.
For these developments in the voting system should “prepare infrastructure, cyber security, and mental,” he added.
However, experts still doubt that the system is fully operational until 2024 – there are many legal and technical nuances.
On 30 July, President Vladimir Zelensky has signed a decree on the development of electronic services. It provides for the auditing of all the state registers in Ukraine, and the creation of a single web-portal of electronic services for the Ukrainians. The decree also gives the start to hold electronic elections and electronic census.
Is it possible to hold e-elections in the Ukraine?
Applicable law this method of election does not allow: to enter elections online, it is necessary to make significant changes.
First of all, it is important not to confuse the voting and elections. Elections is a constitutional term. And under the voting can be understood, for example, and a survey online.
As noted by channel 24 the Chairman of the NGO “Electronic democracy” of Vladimir Flanz, first is to talk about the legislative provision, and then about technology. Very wrong when it is doing the opposite: show technology, and then under it start to “adjust” the law, telling the that it prevents.
The statement added that according to experts was not just about elections.
“They mixed it together and elections, and voting, and poll. In fact, this is completely different things that you can’t solve it. Elections, by definition, must be direct, personal and secret. If these three basic conditions are not correct, then what is called the online election, to bring to life virtually impossible,” he explained.
It is this combination: on the one hand, the requirements of the Constitution, on the other – the attitude toward secret voting makes it impossible for any remote voting in national elections. Remotely no one can provide any personal or, especially, a secret ballot.
You don’t know who from the other side vote: people do it in person or under duress, or one behind him someone worth watching – if this is the mystery disclosed. And I don’t know a lot of other things
– said Vladimir Plants.
This does not mean that online elections in Ukraine is impossible to hold at all. Only in the current environment, legal field either technically or theoretically impossible.
Also, according to the expert, the issue of replacement of all “paper” electronic elections is completely wrong. Must be at least a transitional period. Even as an experiment, these things should “live” for some time in parallel.
Political analyst Dmitry Chupyra also convinced that the next presidential election still can not go in fully electronic form: “If to consider this?? a possibility, then it will be added?? as an option for the voter. That is, you can go to the polling station by the classical method, or, if you have the ability and desire to vote online.”
The risks and benefits of the new system
Among the advantages of the electronic voting system called convenience to the voter, the efficiency of counting of votes, limit possibilities of fraud (you cannot use the unused ballots or vote instead of a person who died long ago).
Also among the positive aspects of this vote is called to increase the turnout – people don’t need to go through a complex procedure to change the place of voting, or even spend time Hiking in the area.
The greatest risk: if the system is difficult to control a process such as the secrecy of the ballot. This, in particular, means that “trade” votes can become easier.
The votes will be easy to buy. People are controlled by, for example, the management of the enterprise or the commander in a military unit, will vote as say “top”. If the polling station is monitored voting process, in such a system to prevent this will be difficult,
– explained channel 24 the lawyer Vasily Miroshnichenko.
He added that to fully introduce e-system for parliamentary or presidential elections prematurely “to move to electronic voting in national elections should be a high level of Informatization of society, and we have not succeeded, and low level of corruption – it is now also very high.”
Therefore, experts say: first of all, there should be clear identification of the individual and considered whether the other person is to vote. Such a risk is 100% unavoidable, but to minimize maybe.
Ukraine more than two decades was to ensure that fair and square vote in the traditional format. How many stories was a fraud? Only an extreme few elections, we already went on those rails, the electoral process itself falsifies very little and we can firmly say: if violations occur, they do not distort the results of the voting
explained 24 channel political analyst Dmitry Copyr.
There are also so-called information risks: the scrapping of the server, or cyber attacks. However, the technical possibilities of today can be minimized.
We should not forget about this lack, as poor quality or lack of access to the Internet in remote areas. That is, the part of the electorate simply will not be able to vote due to the complete transfer to e-system. As regards, in particular, the elderly, they may also lack the skills to vote that way.
In the case of distortion of results of e-voting, or distrust of the public, experts do not rule out such effects, as the next Maidan in protest.
The secret ballot – how important is it?
Vladimir Plants suggests that in the case of the introduction of e-elections in Ukraine could start a discussion on whether the secret ballot in national elections. The only question is whether society is ready for such radical changes?
“I quite freely about their secret vote, for me it does not matter. And another person may be the opposite – some grandmother is worried that no one knew what choice she made. That’s her right. And while the Constitution guarantees this right, I believe that it must be defended, and not easy to change in order to be able to vote remotely” – said the expert.
It should be clarified that the secret ballot in Ukraine is not an option where everyone can choose, but an obligation. The disclosure of this mystery there is a liability. More specifically, it is a crime under article 159 of the Criminal code of Ukraine.
– a fine of 100 to 300 untaxed minimum incomes of citizens (from 1700 to 5100 UAH)
– corrective works for the term up to 2 years;
– restriction of liberty for a term up to 3 years.
If the crime was committed by an election Commission member or another person using his official position, the responsibility will be more serious.
World famous such experiments, but for most countries priority was precisely the secrecy of the ballot. For example, such variants of the elections considered in Latvia and Lithuania, however, at the national level, the system has failed.
Options for electronic elections
The society is actively discussing electronic voting, but often forget about the second, equally important part of the election – counting of votes. Vladimir Flonz notes that in electronic elections it is possible to digitize each of these processes separately.
We have done the model for the election of student government in the KNU. Of Taras Shevchenko. These elections are also spelled out in the law, they are the same requirements as for a national. Was a system with a paper ballot, not remote, but on special papers with QR codes and with a fully automated counting system,
– gives the example of the expert.
Under this system, the person is physically unable to participate in the counting process, since all data is encoded and may consider only a special program. Any intervention, even in the server, which it believes does not make sense – it will notice immediately. Just the final figures will not converge and this means that the results are fake. Such a system minimizes the risks of cyber attacks.
In voting models, which are used, for example, in Estonia, the issue of cyber security is much more critical – change results on the server can indeed affect the final result, and the infrastructure is theoretically vulnerable.
In the e-voting Estonia is the use of the Network and identification card, which certifies the identity of the voter.
Estonia is also an example of a country which changed the approach to the secrecy of voting for the right. Citizens can choose to vote via the Internet or from the site. That is, there are two systems operate in parallel and, if a person is an important secret – it?? comes Sunday to the site and vote there.
If this issue is not critical – within a few days, you can vote remotely. In this case, the mystery is technically secured, but de jure it is not guaranteed that a citizen shall vote personally. Here it is a human right, as a citizen, and not imposed by government debt.
Another interesting point: if a person is forced to vote for a certain candidate and his secret is not protected, he can come on Sunday to the site and vote there. Then read out the voice, not electronic.
While we talk about what kind of model of e-elections will choose in the Ukraine and if it will happen, eventually, impossible. It is likely that it will be unique and new. In the same way as before to calculate the cost of voting, which are completely dependant on the chosen model.