EDITORIAL Pages: Durham elections vulnerable to hackers

An interesting comment about Internet voting in Durham.

This was on the editorial page of the Oct. 21 edition of the Toronto Star.

Election outsourcing a scandal
Re Federal government a target for hackers, Oct. 18

The mind-boggling statistic that the federal government is attacked by hackers 474 million times per day should alarm the Regional Municipality of Durham, and it three constituent cities (Pickering, Ajax and Whitby). which are conducting the current municipal elections entirely over the internet. (Or phone for those without an internet connection.) This fundamental change to the electoral process was enacted without any public input.

The Durham election has been outsourced to a private company, Dominion Voting Systems. There are no polling stations, no ballots, no scrutineers, no way to verify the vote, and no opportunity for a recount.

The election will be called by Dominion Voting Systems, and that will be it. How can anyone check the accuracy of the results? Without a paper trail, it will be impossible.

Given the lack of security on the internet, the opportunity for skewing or corrupting our vote has increased exponentially.

That the province has allowed local governments to undermine the integrity of their elections in this way is a scandal. No one ever claimed that democracy is efficient or cheap. It’s neither. Sacrificing electoral security to the god of convenience amounts to an open invitation to corrupt our elections. Queen’s Park must intervene to prevent this from happening again.

Steven Spencer, Pickering

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