Voting is a very important part of any democracy, as it gives its citizens the chance to participate in the democratic governance process. In a democracy, the objective of voting is not just the creation of government but a collective effort that drives the interests of the society and the economy.
The fundamental objective of voting across the world is to ensure that it happens in a fair and transparent way. The traditional ballot system has existed for years, but it’s safe to say now that it has outlived its time. Challenges, such as double voting, spurious votes and ballot privacy concerns, have been in the news time and again showing the inefficiency of the existing system.
Plus, the cost of organizing ballot voting at scale is expensive and is time-consuming. For example, India spent close to $8 billion in its 2019 national elections and took approximately 40 days to finish the entire voting process.
Therefore, we can safely say that the traditional voting system has disadvantages not only when it comes to security and the time it consumes but also with the cost to organize the entire process in a seamless way.
Is internet voting the solution?
Can we then say that internet voting is the solution to all the problems faced by the existing traditional ballot system? Internet voting pilot projects have been implemented across the world but have been discontinued after a while.
Economic challenges, such as internet accessibility, learning and adapting to the new voting style by the population, can still be overcome with development and training.
But the risks related to security (computer viruses/hacking) and scalability mechanisms are the ones that limit the pilot. Also, internet voting also cannot essentially guarantee one vote per one person, and the high cost of implementing it affects the implementation further.