E-voting in French elections raises problems
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Deutsch: Frankreich: Probleme mit dem E-Voting
During the French 2012 parliamentary elections, the citizens that were not in the country had the possibility to vote online. However, the transparency of the procedure was far from the desired one.
While, according to the law, the delegates of the candidates can check the electronic vote operations, the Pirate Party delegates could not verify the source code of a virtual urn monitored by a private company. With the exception of a candidate from the Left Front, the other parties have not even asked to check the electronic voting process meant for 700 000 voters.
At the end of the election exercise and the closure of the virtual urn, the delegates of the Pirate Party have found significant security faults. The generation of the electronic keys allowing the opening of the urn was done by means of unwarranted information tools. In some cases, the keys which were supposed to be unique could be duplicated by any person with access to the computer on which the keys were generated. Therefore, the Pirate Party delegates have asked to have access to the source code of the e-voting software but they were refused.“We have witnessed a ceremony staged to give the impression of security and to put the officials at rest, while there is a total opacity of the key points”, said Philippe Blanc, one of the delegates.
The French Pirate Party has also submitted a complaint to the Constitutional Court asking the annulment of the electronic vote made by the abroad French citizens due to the problems encountered in the e-voting process, its transparency, lack of security and its possible biased results.
On 21 June 2012, Numerama revealed an internal document issued by Atos Worldline and Scytl, the two companies chosen by the government to create the software solution and host the electronic voting, detailing the security measures for the election scrutiny. The document was showing that certain measures required by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and ANSSI (l'Agence Nationale de Sécurité des Systèmes d'Information) had not been foreseen by Atos.
Atos has required right away Numerama to delete the article, threatening with a lawsuit, but with this action the document just got more publicity then expected, with its copies already available on various servers on the Internet.
The Party Pirate lacking the right to check the scrutiny for 700 000
voters (only in French, 21.05.2012)
The Pirate Party demands the annulment of the Internet vote (only in
ATOS requires Numerama to suppress its document on electronic voting
(only in French, 22.06.2012)
Atos or the unavoidable Streisand effect of the censure (only in French,
Document from Atos trying to be blocked (only in French)