Dragonchain’s Blockchain-Based Voting System for Voting Integrity
The 2020 election exposed, on a large scale, the enormous flaws in the voting process. Mail-in voting, while necessary for some, had significant portions of the electorate questioning the integrity of the vote.
We are at an inflection point where everyone on all sides would agree that we really need a way to know that a vote was eligible and was actually counted. We should be able to go to our computers, pull the data, know everyone is seeing the same data, and have confidence that the person who won is the actual winner.
Hoping For A Change
Many issues plague the election process and you can read more about them here. But several of these issues can be addressed by simply implementing a system with a digital identity feature and is transparent, auditable, secure, and provides proof. Blockchain-based voting is the obvious choice but not all blockchains are created equal.
During the 2018 midterms Voatz tried to capture the blockchain voting market but ultimately failed in three ways.
According to MIT researchers, the application was vulnerable to hackers who could alter stop, and expose votes.
Voatz's third-party identity providers were susceptible to data leaks.
The system was veiled under the guise of proprietary information thus limiting the ability of anyone to independently audit the votes.
Although Voatz has made changes to its processes, experts are still concerned about digital access for all voters and blockchain's ability to integrate with the current voting infrastructure. It is not enough to use just any blockchain-based voting system. If the system lacks transparency where the vote can not be independently verified, is susceptible to hacking attacks and data leaks, and isn't accessible to every voter there is no benefit to changing the election process.
Blockchain-Based Voting Platforms
When implementing a blockchain-based voting system it is important to pick the right type of blockchain. Public blockchains like Bitcoin and Ethereum are fully decentralized and they have a high-security value. They do offer some level of limited privacy however, once one bit of private information is known it is easy to extrapolate more data.
Public blockchain-based voting systems are problematic in that network congestion tends to increase the fees for, not only the voting system but for the entire public network as well. Public blockchains are not compatible with traditional voting systems and require specialized developers to develop and deploy applications. While a public blockchain-based voting system would allow for independent audits and offer high security of the ballots that were cast, they are not scalable to enterprise levels.
So how about a private blockchain-based voting system? Indeed private blockchains offer more privacy and control of data. They have a higher throughput so they can verify more transactions in a shorter amount of time than public chains. However, they are not decentralized and still require trust. A private blockchain-based voting system would lack transparency and, although votes could be audited based on proprietary access, they are not open to independent audits.
Both types of blockchains offer some level of secured immutable data but both are equally susceptible to quantum computing. The threat of bad actors using quantum technology for nefarious reasons is very real and it's happening today. So the question becomes can we have the best of both blockchains and protect all the data at all times from even quantum cyber-attacks? The answer is yes. Let's talk about how.
Dragonchain Powered Voting System
Dragonchain's blockchain-based voting system uses our hybrid blockchain platform. The hybrid platform combines private and public blockchains to address the pitfalls and capitalize on the benefits of each.
Dragonchain's hybrid platform uses a private business-level blockchain to record and secure data in an immutable way. All sensitive data remains at the business level on the business's blockchain. Because of this, the platform is fully and natively compliant with all personally identifiable information (PII) regulations such as GDPR/CCPA/HIPAA. The voting system keeps the vote on the election board's blockchain. The vote is disassociated from the voter and proof is sent for verification. With the vote on-chain, the election board can provide real-time election results near-instantly, with decentralized proof for transparency and independent audits.
Proof of Vote
The platform architecture by default keeps sensitive data private and decentralizes the proof. Data is stripped from the transaction and sent for decentralized verification across multiple public blockchains in Dragon Net. After the proof is verified, it is then secured to multiple public networks such as Bitcoin and Ethereum for their high-security value.
The use of Bitcoin and Ethereum is necessary to provide measurable proof. Proof reports like the one seen here show the measurable security value of how much energy and hash power has been applied to a single transaction. Proof reports can be analyzed during and/or after the close of voting and show indisputable evidence that all votes are either legitimate or have been compromised. The proof of vote then has tens of millions of dollars of security applied, daily. Within a month that number grows to about a quarter of a billion dollars and about four billion dollars in a year.
Easy to Use Flexibility
The use of multiple blockchains is pivotal to the ability of Dragonchain to scale. Dragonchain uses their patented interoperability technology, Interchain, to interop with any blockchain and any traditional system through an API connection. Writing smart contracts is very easy as they can be written in any code language which eliminates the need for specialized IT staff. The integration is flexible and adaptable for complete and total scalability.
Interoperable With Any System
Dragonchain's voting system is interoperable with voting machines, paper ballots, or any combination of the two.
Although seen by some as archaic, paper ballots have been the best approach to voting to date. But paper voting lacks transparency and real-time results are difficult. Also, trust in each voting center is still required.
Proof reports can be used with paper ballots to provide transparency after the close of voting. The reports will confirm all votes are legitimate, elections were not tampered with by outside parties such as hackers, and are indisputable.
When combined with quantum-safe technology from CloudFace and AQED, the voting system provides an additional layer of protection from cyber-attacks. Quantum encryption is integrated at the core so that all data on the private business blockchain, even at rest, is protected from bad actors.
The Know Your Customer (KYC) process is a critical part of fair results to ensure the person voting is eligible to vote. With the additional use of Factor, Dragonchain's decentralized identity product, voters can retain control over their own personally identifiable information (PII) when voting. Factor selectively exposes only what is minimally necessary to prove eligibility. Information such as age, citizenship, and residency location or voting district can be grouped into a certificate for the voter to release to prove eligibility.
Learn more about Factor here.
Auditability and Accountability
Dragonchain's voting system allows for official audits and statistical analysis while maintaining privacy as the proof of the vote is separated from the actual vote with identifying information. These results can be audited by any independent entity without requiring specialized access. With a private key the voters themselves can search and find their vote on the blockchain. They can validate and prove that their vote was cast and counted appropriately. Without knowledge of the private key, no other person will be able to connect that vote with that particular voter. Only the voter can see that their vote was recorded but anyone can independently verify that a vote- unattached to a specific voter is valid and is being counted.
We even bring the possibility of increased engagement with the electorate. Bounties applied to track fraud incentivize people to find holes in the system. By providing transparency into any problems and being transparent about the implementation of solutions the electorate trusts that voting is being handled honestly. In turn, the electorate now knows that their vote is counted and is more inclined to be heard and go vote.
There Is Only One Choice
From the 5.7MM registered voters in Los Angeles County to the 5 people who cast their vote in Dixville Notch, New Hampshire at midnight on election day, Dragonchain's voting system is the only transparent, scalable, quantum-safe voting system that allows the voter to maintain control of their identifying information. Integration with any already in use voting system is easy and can be modified and adapted to new technologies as needed allowing even the smallest municipalities the ability to capitalize on the powerful voting system.
There is no need to wait on the federal government to decide if blockchain-based voting can be implemented. In the US, elections are very much a local event. Forward-thinking state and local officials will be well served by working with Dragonchain to bring integrity back to the voting process. Dragonchain's platform is what makes our voting system the clear choice for blockchain-based voting.
Contact us today to start planning a more secure and transparent voting process for your jurisdiction.