[Cryptography] Questions about crypto that lay people want to understand

Hanno Böck hanno at hboeck.de
Sun Dec 20 17:16:38 EST 2015

On Sat, 19 Dec 2015 11:22:07 -0800
Henry Baker <hbaker1 at pipeline.com> wrote:

> * If HTTPS is good enough for
> my bank account, how come I
> can't use it to vote?  Why
> do I have to vote in person?

Because Voting is a much more complicated problem than banking.
The crypto in onlinebanking is essentially just "You communicate with
your bank and your bank needs to know that it's you and not someone
else." That's relatively easy solvable with existing crypto methods.

With vothing you require:
a) You communicate to another person
b) That other person needs to know that it's authentic, i.e. comes from
a legit voter
c) But that it's not a duplicate. (You're supposed to vote only once.)
c) But - here's the really tricky part - that other person must not
know that the communication (the vote) came from you.

You can have secure online voting, but only if it's not anonymous. The
anonymity of voting is the part that makes electronic voting a hard
(probably impossible) problem.

Hanno Böck

mail/jabber: hanno at hboeck.de
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