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Friday, 11 July 2008 09:52

Electronic voting faulty in France

Written by Nick Farell

Image

Serious flaws


France's electronic voting system has been responsible for fudging the results of elections, according to a new study.

Chantal Enguehard, a member of the Laboratory of Computer Science, Nantes Atlantique, has been studying the results of electronic voting
for a year. She has discovered that polling locations which use electronic voting machines exhibit a higher number of discrepancies than those using conventional paper ballots.

Enguehard compared the results from more than 21,000 polling stations by comparing electoral registers, which voters sign after voting, with the total vote counts from machines and paper ballots in several elections.  She found that more than 30 percent of polling stations that use electronic voting machines produced strange results.

Enguehard ruled out user error because the margin of discrepancies increased in later elections when voters were already familiar
with the systems. The research was funding by the Ethical Citizen lobby group which called for better tools that will enable independent evaluators to to measure the quality and reliability of elections.

Nick Farell

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