Free & Fair is creating a guaranteed secure, correct, resilient and publicly-verifiable voting system that comprehensively addresses on-site and remote voting on and before Election Day, as well as post-election tabulation and audits. We will deliver these results by leveraging decades of expertise in building national security critical systems for the Department of Defense and the intelligence community.
Does your jurisdiction need new a new voting system? The quality and cost of a system will be in heavily influenced by your written Request for Proposals (RFP), which spells out the requirements your vendors must meet. Read on to see our recommendations for the creation of an RFP for election systems.
Is disconnecting from the internet enough to keep a voting system safe from hacking?
Transparency is a word that holds a great deal of importance to Free & Fair. After all, we develop and give away open source software. Open source software embodies transparency because anyone can review, audit, contribute, and extend it. The decision to open source our technology was an easy one.
As people and companies seek new ways to conduct elections that make better sense in our high tech world, several startups have proposed using blockchains, or even Bitcoin itself, to conduct elections. Using Bitcoin (or a blockchain) as an election system is a bad idea that really doesn’t make sense. While blockchains can be useful in the election process, they are only appropriate for use in one small part of a larger election system.
The path to provably secure, high assurance, open source election systems capable of protecting elections and providing such certainty may seem daunting. However, the process of achieving that goal can be broken down into a series of useful, common sense steps, each of which positively affects current election systems and processes. We consider these steps in three phases, starting with the most basic and building to fully trustworthy and transparent systems and vendor relations.
The most critical software and hardware systems go beyond evaluation and certification to provide guarantees and mathematical evidence that they will function exactly as intended at all times.
Open Source Software (OSS) is computer software whose source code is made freely available to anyone who wants to use, study, modify, enhance or re-distribute it for any reason. OSS is a fundamentally collaborative concept that seeks to harness the expertise of worldwide developers in order to achieve a polished, correct, and secure product.
Elections software that only operates on proprietary hardware makes it impossible for a jurisdiction to change vendors without replacing their entire voting system and puts the jurisdiction at the mercy of a single vendor with respect to upgrade and maintenance pricing.