IT security pros want e-voting for Brexit

A vast majority of the IT security industry would love to see the Brexit vote done electronically, AlienVault reported on Wednesday.

Asking nearly 300 IT security professionals during the 2016 Infosecurity Europe conference, 79 per cent said e-voting would be a good decision, mostly because it could improve voter turnout.

The rest, 21 per cent, believe the technology is 'fundamentally insecure' and not yet ready to be used on such large scale projects.

Voter turnout is extremely important in the Brexit referendum as early analysis have shown that it's basically tied. It's the undecided voters who could ultimately decide the fate of the UK.

E-voting trials have been done before, AlienVault reminds, in 2003, 2004 and 2007, and even though they did improve voter turnout (in average by 4.9 per cent, in some places up to 20 per cent), they had been ultimately abandoned because of ‘significant security and transparency issues’.

“Most governments have long cited security concerns as the main reason for not implementing e-voting in mainstream elections,” said Javvad Malik, security advocate at AlienVault.

“So this significant vote of confidence from the IT security industry should demand attention. If those who understand the current threat landscape and deal with cyber-attacks every day believe that the system can be made safe and fit for this purpose, then surely it is time for governments to investigate further.”

Despite the challenges, AlienVault concludes, e-voting continues to attract support, as it is seen as the best way to reverse the trend of low voter turnout amongst younger voters.