Summarized by Kent Larsen
Officials Hope LDS Missionaries Will Help Test 'Cyber Voting' In November
(Testing Cyber Voting)
ABCNEWS.com (AP) 22Feb00 D1
No More Paper Ballots for Some - But Is It Secure?
OGDEN, UTAH -- Officials in Weber County, Utah hope that LDS
Missionaries from the county will help test absentee voting over
the Internet in the November election this fall. Weber is one of
five counties around the U.S. scheduled to take part in the experiment
during the November presidential election. The test will determine
whether all U.S. citizens overseas will be able to vote online
instead of on paper ballots as they do now.
Originally the trial was to be limited to members of the military,
including those stationed at Hill Air Force Base that are out of
the country on November 2nd. However, the county struggled with
finding enough voters for the test. So the test has been opened to any
county resident that may be out of the country on election day. County
clerk Linda Lunceford says that the county hopes this will include LDS
Officials hope that the program will reduce the number of paper
absentee ballots, which sometimes take weeks to get, for the 6
million U.S. residents abroad. However, the fact that these
ballots would be available in the internet raises fears that hackers could
manipulate the vote. Weber State University in Ogden experienced
exactly that problem when 400 votes cast in its first online
student election had to be voided because they had been cast with stolen
student ID numbers.
The Weber test will require Internet voters to register in person
ahead of time to receive a pre-approved "electronic
signature," which will allow them to vote online. Votes would be protected by so-called "strong" encryption.